HONG KONG (Nikkei Markets) -- Asian shares outside Japan rebounded Tuesday alongside pullback in crude oil prices as risk aversion related to U.S.-Iran tensions abated.
The Nikkei Asia300 index advanced 0.7% to 1,387.59. The index had declined more than a percent yesterday after Washington and Tehran exchanged threats following the killing of an Iranian military commander in a U.S. airstrike.
The rebound on the A300 came after U.S. equities yesterday recovered from early losses to edge higher while crude oil prices eased. Brent crude slipped 0.6% to $68.47 per barrel on Tuesday, after hitting four-month highs of $70.74 yesterday. Oil prices are considered the best proxy to what traders make of the latest U.S.-Iran conflict.
Risk appetite on Wall Street was further helped by data that showed a pickup in U.S. service sector activity and better-than-expected service activity out of Germany and the U.K. An expected signing of the U.S.-China interim deal next week was another positive for equities. China's trade delegation tentatively plans to travel to Washington for four days from Jan. 13 for the signing of the phase-one deal, the South China Morning Post reported yesterday. The deal is expected to be singed on Jan. 15.
The closely watched ISM U.S. non-manufacturing December PMI (Purchasing Managers Index) data is due later in the day.
Energy-related companies were among the losers amid the pullback in crude oil. CNOOC dipped 0.6%, PetroChina lost 1.7%, South Korea's SK Innovation declined 2.4%, and Thailand's PTT Exploration and Production ended 0.4% lower.
Taiwanese iPhone assembler Hon Hai Precision Industry slipped 1.5% after saying sales last month were down 12.9% from a year earlier.
Malaysia Airports Holdings fell 4% as the airport operator's group CEO resigned.
Guangzhou Automobile Group shed 0.3% after reporting December sales volume of 186,041 units, a tad lower than the 186,689 units sold a year ago. Its peer Geely Automobile advanced 1.6% after reporting 39% jump in last month's sales volume.
-- Nimesh Vora