In corporate news, shares of Hong Kong-listed Orient Overseas International jumped 19.5 percent on news of a $6.3 billion offer from shipping company Cosco Shipping Holdings. Shenzhen-listed shares of Cosco have been suspended since May, but its Hong Kong-listed shares were off by 0.32 percent.
Shares of Hong Kong-listed Wanda Hotel Development jumped as much as 155 percent on news it was selling 76 hotels and 13 cultural and tourism projects to Sunac, a Tianjin-based property developer for 63.18 billion yuan ($9.29 billion). Wanda Hotel shares were up 37.93 percent at 3:03 p.m. HK/SIN.
Sunac shares in Hong Kong were suspended from trade on Monday ahead of an announcement of "substantial development."
Citi initiated coverage on Sony Financial Holdings in a note on Friday with a "Sell" rating and a target price of 1,600 yen. Sony Financial shares closed higher by 0.25 percent at at 2,042 yen each.
"We see more downside risk rather than upside potential for the shares over the next 12 months," Citi analysts Koichi Niwa and Arisa Yoshikoshi said in the note.
Meanwhile, oil prices edged up. Brent crude futures were higher by 0.34 percent at $46.87 a barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate futures traded higher by 0.32 percent at $44.37.
In currencies, the dollar firmed against a basket of currencies, with the dollar index trading at 96.040 at 2:52 p.m. HK/SIN.
Stocks on Wall Street closed higher on Friday following better-than-expected nonfarm payrolls figures for the month of June. A total of 222,000 new jobs were recorded last month, compared with the 179,000 forecast by a Reuters poll. Wage growth was largely unchanged, compared with the previous month.
— CNBC's Huileng Tan contributed to this report.