The Nikkei Index inched 0.17% higher to trade near six-month highs in volatile trade on Wednesday on the back of better-than-expected earnings from Honda Motor Co and Tokyo Electron Ltd, which overshadowed weak industrial output data.
The Hang Seng Index gained more than 0.9% on Wednesday, advancing higher for a seventh straight day with investor sentiment bullish on the property sector, while shares on mainland China ended a long-running streak as early gains made by index heavyweight PetroChina Co Ltd were counterbalanced by falling real estate and banking shares.
According to Reuters, European markets are expected to open flat to slightly weaker on Wednesday with a number of blue-chip shares such as Airbus and Infineon under the spotlight after reporting their quarterly financial results.
Reuters reports that US markets slipped lower in a broad sell-off on Tuesday, on the back of a lower than expected second-quarter earnings from United Parcel Service (UPS), the world's biggest courier company, which lost 3.7% and put pressure on transportation stocks, which is often viewed as a proxy for business activity. Business Day reports that the JSE All Share Index reached a new record high on Tuesday with mining shares leading the gainers, supported by the small bounce in metals prices off their recent lows.
The Rand is trading weaker at R10.6107 against the US Dollar, with the Euro quoted at R14.2233 and the British Pound at R17.9451.
The gold price last trading lower at $1,299.30, with the platinum price quoted at $1,476.70, while the palladium price is trading higher at $880.30.
Brent was last trading slightly higher at $107.52 a barrel.