Asia Higher as Oil Prices Climb

Stock markets in Asia-Pacific were broadly higher on Monday, shrugging off the weaker-than-expected April U.S. jobs reports; while oil futures advanced.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 gained 166.52 points, or 0.6%, to finish the week’s first session at 29,518.34.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index lost 14.99 points, or 0.1%, to 28,595.66.

Last week, the widely watched U.S. jobs report for April came in below expectations. The report showed U.S. employers added 266,000 net payrolls last month and the unemployment rate rose to 6.1%.

Over in Australia, retail sales for March increased 1.3% from the prior month — slightly missing the 1.4% forecast by analysts. But business confidence in the country surged to a record high in April, according to a survey by the National Australia Bank.

Across the region, the Japanese yen changed hands at 108.98 per U.S. dollar, while the Australian dollar was flat at $0.7848.

In other markets

In Shanghai, the CSI 300 faded 3.63 points, or 0.1%, to 4,992.42.

In Singapore, the Straits Times index slid 17.85 points, or 0.6%, to 3,182.41.

In Taiwan, the Taiex index let go of 49.39 points, or 0.3%, to 17,235.61.

In Korea, the Kospi index defied the tide and gained 52.1 points, or 1.6%, to 3,249.30

In New Zealand the NZX 50 dipped 70.91 points, or 0.6%, to 12,659.01

In Australia, the ASX 200 jumped 91.98 points, or 1.3%, to 7,172.80.