In China, Shanghai Composite index rose over 1.7 percent, to 2,104.4, its biggest jump in three weeks, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng index rose 0.8 percent, to 21,821.8.
Japan's Nikkei 225 index reversed early losses to gain 0.2 percent, to 8,946.9. South Korea's Kospi was down 0.7 percent at 1,898.4.
Trading was tepid in other financial markets. The euro was flat at $1.2964, while the price of the benchmark oil contract in New York was up 46 cents at $86.70 a barrel.