Good cheer from U.S. economic data spread to Asian equity markets on Thursday, which rose ahead of Friday's non-farm payrolls report.
Receding fears, originally stoked by press reports earlier this week that the ECB would taper its quantitative easing program, also bolstered Asian stocks
And deal news lifted individual shares, including confirmation from Fujitsu that it's in talks about selling its PC business to Lenovo. (LNVGY) That sent the Japanese group's shares up 5.8%, while Lenovo rose 2.3% in Hong Kong.
Also in Japan, insurer Sompo rose 6.4% after confirmation on Wednesday of its $6.3 billion takeover agreement for Endurance Specialty (ENH) .
In Seoul, Samsung Electronics (SSNLF) was up 5.8% after activist investor Elliott began agitating for a restructuring. Samsung also said on Thursday it is acquiring U.S. artificial intelligence (AI) platform developer Viv Labs, which is run by by a co-creator of Apple's (AAPL) - Get Report Siri voice assistant program.
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And Bank of East Asia, another Elliott target, was up 1.1% in Hong Kong after the sale of its share registry arm Tricor Holdings to private equity firm Permira for HK$6.5 billion ($838 million).
In South Korea, the Kospi was up 0.55% at 2,064.21.
Typhoon Chaba killed at least five people in South Korea, the BBC reported, and flooded the country's biggest port in the city of Busan, before heading for Japan.
Shares of Hyundai Motor fell 1.1% percent, after Reuters reported that two of its factories suspended operations because of flooding from the typhoon.
In Japan the Nikkei 225 closed up 0.47% at 16,899.10 and the Topix was up 0.45% to 1,353.93.
The dollar was recently up 0.06% against the yen at ¥103.5600.
U.S. futures were down, with the Dow Jones off 0.4%, the S&P down 0.5% and the Nasdaq down 0.02%.
Oil prices fell, with the West Texas intermediate down 0.56% at $49.55.
Gold was recently down 0.09% at $1,267.50 an ounce.
In Hong Kong the Hang Seng was up 0.51% at 23,909.74 . In Sydney the S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.55% to 5,483.00.
A U.S. services sector purchasing managers' index out on Wednesday recovered sharply in September from a six-year low in August, and added to a positive picture painted by a gauge of the manufacturing sector on Monday. On Friday, analysts are looking for the U.S. economy to have added about 170,000 jobs in September, up from 151,000 in August.