Stocks in Asia and Europe advanced Thursday as investors speculated that the U.S. Federal Reserve may defer an interest rate hike till next year and crude oil prices held on to their gains from Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the dollar slipped 0.2 percent against five of its peer currencies, close to Wednesday's 14-week low against the euro, after a string of weak U.S. economic data and New York Federal Reserve President William Dudley warning that a weakening outlook for the global economy would have to be taken into account for upcoming rate decisions.

Apart from the Nikkei 225, which closed 0.85 percent down, Asian markets rose Thursday. Australia’s ASX 200 led the charts in Asia, gaining 2 percent, while China’s benchmark Shanghai Composite rose 1.53 percent. China’s CSI 300 Index of the largest listed companies in Shanghai and Shenzhen rose 1.23 percent and the country’s Nasdaq-style ChiNext Index rose 1.73 percent for the day.

Elsewhere in Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index rose 1.01 percent, South Korea’s Kospi Index rose 1.35 percent and Mumbai’s S&P BSE Sensex closed 0.48 percent up.

In Europe, commodity-related shares posted early gains, with the U.K.’s miner-heavy FTSE 100 up 1.16 percent while Germany's DAX was up 0.21 percent and France's CAC 40 was up 0.31 percent. The pan-European Stoxx 600 rose 0.31 percent Thursday.

In the U.S., S&P 500 stock futures rose 0.22 percent while Nasdaq and Dow Jones stock futures were up 0.22 percent.