Asian markets up ahead of US jobs data

ASX stock board Image copyright AFP/Getty

Markets in Asia rose on Friday as investors waited for the latest US jobs data.

The non-farm payrolls figures, due out later, will be studied closely to see if the Federal Reserve is likely to raise US interest rates soon.

Japan's Nikkei 225 index closed up 0.5% at 16,642.23.

But shares in Suzuki fell 1.3% after Japan's transport ministry raided its headquarters as part of a probe into the carmaker's fuel efficiency tests.

China's Shanghai Composite ended the day up 13.45 points, or 0.5%, at 2,938.68. In Hong Kong, the benchmark Hang Seng rose 88.02 points, or 0.4%, to 20,947.24.

South Korea's Kospi index closed out the trading week flat at 1,985.84 points.

Australia's S&P ASX/200 index finished up 0.8% - or 40 points - at 5,318.89, helped by an increase in commodity-related stocks. Mining giants Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton were both up by 1.4%.

Oil prices rose to a seven-month high, after a weekly US petroleum report showed a decline in the country's stockpile.

Energy prices rebounded even though a meeting of the Opec oil producers' group on Thursday failed to set a cap on the amount of oil the group produces. Opec members generate about 40% of the world's crude oil exports.