×

Asia enjoys CNY rally, with Tokyo, Sydney at multi-year highs

Asian markets enjoyed a positive session on Wednesday, with Tokyo and Sydney shares hitting fresh multi-year highs following a positive lead from Wall Street overnight.

However, trading volumes were light ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday, with markets in China, Taiwan,South Korea and Vietnam closed.

Overnight, U.S. stocks finished at highs, supported by encouraging reports out of Europe. Greece intends to ask for an extension of its loan agreement with the euro zone on Wednesday, a source in Brussels said, distinguishing this from the country's full bailout program.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 both closed up 0.2 percent, with the latter hitting its second record close for the year. The tech-heavy Nasdaq added 0.1 percent.

Symbol
Name
Price
 
Change
%Change
NIKKEI
---
HSI
---
ASX 200
---
SHANGHAI
---
KOSPI
---
CNBC 100
---

Nikkei rises 1.2%

Japan's Nikkei 225 index hit a fresh 8-year high, supported by the yen weakening against the dollar. Markets were little changed after the Bank of Japan kept its monetary policy steady on Wednesday, as expected.

Consumer electronic stocks led the gains: Sony rose 1.6 percent ahead of CEO Kazuo Hirai's update on the firm's business strategy later in the day while Nikon and Panasonic jumped 2 and 3 percent, respectively.

Read MoreSouth Korea needs more easing, urgently

ASX adds 1%

Australia's benchmark S&P ASX 200 index closed in sight of a new seven-year high thanks to a 47 percent surge in Toll Holdings. The firm accepted a $5.1 billion takeover offer from Japan Post Holdings.

Oil and gas producer Woodside Petroleum bounced 4 percent as its full-year profit jumped 38 percent. Evolution Mining closed down 2 percent despite posting a 22 percent rise in first-half profit.

IAG tanked over 8 percent after announcing a 10 percent fall in first-half profit as competition in the industry intensified.

Rest of Asia up

Singapore's key Straits Times index gained 0.6 percent with shares of commodity trader Noble Group 2 percent higher following a two-day selloff on the back of a critical research report.

Read MoreSingapore to unveil a 'people's budget' next week

Indonesia's Jakarta Composite index climbed to record highs following Bank Indonesia's surprise interest rate cut on Tuesday.