Asian markets likely got a fillip from higher oil prices, closing mostly higher Thursday after wavering throughout the trading session.
The gains followed uncertain trade in the wake of a reading on China's economy showing growth in the services sector moderated and as the U.S. dollar strengthened.
Crude prices gained ground in Asian trade, after reports of Canada's oil sands production being disrupted by a wildfire and an escalation of fighting in Libya, according to Reuters.
U.S. crude futures jumped 3.15 percent to $44.65 a barrel, after settling up 0.3 percent in U.S. trade Wednesday. Brent crude futures were also up 2.51 percent at $45.28, after settling 0.78 percent lower in the U.S. session.
Down Under, the S&P/ASX 200 closed up 0.15 percent, or 7.963 points, at 5,279.1, buoyed by a pick up in the energy subindex, which was up 1.12 percent, and financials, which rose 0.66 percent. The gains were offset by the 0.66 percent decline in the materials subindex.
The mainland Chinese markets ended the session higher, with the Shanghai composite closing up 0.23 percent, or 6.869 points, at 2,998.141, and the Shenzhen composite adding 0.721 percent, or 13.912 points, to 1,942.544. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index shed 0.22 percent as of 3:13 p.m. SIN/HK time.
The China Caixin services purchasing mangers' index (PMI), released Thursday morning local time, came in at 51.8 for April, continuing to show expansion, but marking a moderation from 52.2 in March. A reading above 50 indicates activity is growing, while one below that level suggests a contraction.
Markets in Japan, South Korea, Indonesia and Thailand were closed Thursday for public holidays. The Nikkei 225 finished down 3.1 percent on Monday, and has been closed since for public holidays.