Asian stocks turned in a mixed performance on Friday as minutes from the most recent Fed meeting added weight to expectations for a rate hike in December and caution set in ahead of the highly-anticipated meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping at the G-20 summit in Argentina this weekend.
Chinese shares rose despite some disappointing data, suggesting that China’s manufacturing activity continued to worsen in November.
The manufacturing PMI stood at 50.0 in November, missing expectations for a score of 50.2, which would have been unchanged from the October reading.
The non-manufacturing PMI came in with a score of 53.4 – also shy of expectations for 53.8 and down from 53.9 in the previous month. The composite index posted a score of 52.8, down from 53.1 a month earlier.
China’s Shanghai Composite index gained 20.74 points or 0.81 percent to finish at 2,588.19 while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index rose 0.21 percent to 26,506.75.
Japanese shares hit a three-week high in cautious trade as investors awaited the outcome of the weekend meeting between the U.S. and Chinese presidents.
The Nikkei average rose 88.46 points or 0.40 percent to 22,351.06, the highest closing level since Nov. 8. The broader Topix index closed 0.48 percent higher at 1,667.45.
Petroleum stocks led the surge after U.S. crude oil prices rose more than 2 percent overnight. Inpex Corp rallied 3 percent and Japan Petroleum advanced 2.3 percent. Drugmakers saw defensive buying, with Otsuka Holdings climbing as much as 4.5 percent.
Murata Manufacturing, a manufacturer of electronic components, gained 2.5 percent after announcing its mid-term business plan.
On the data front, Japan’s industrial output rose a seasonally adjusted 2.9 percent month on month in October, a preliminary reading showed. That exceeded forecasts for an increase of 1.1 percent following