Most of the Asian markets rose Thursday as hopes for monetary easing measures to be announced by China grew following reports that the country's inflation slowed down in July compared to the previous month.
Japan's Nikkei Stock Average rose 0.43 percent or 37.78 points to 8918.94. Among major gainers were Tosoh Corp (2.78 percent), Kobe Steel Ltd (2.78 percent) and Toyota Motor Corp (0.32 percent).
The Chinese Shanghai Composite fell 0.13 percent or 2.71 points to 2158.28. Hong Kong's Hang Seng was up 0.79 percent or 157.87 points to 20223.39. Among major gainers were Citic Pacific Ltd (1.37 percent) and Li & Fung Ltd (1.29 percent).
South Korea's KOSPI Composite Index rose 1.33 percent or 25.34 points to 1928.57. Shares of Samsung Electronics Co Ltd climbed 0.91 percent and those of Hyundai Motor Co advanced 3.18 percent.
India's BSE Sensex was up 0.47 percent or 82.16 points to 17682.72. Major gainers were Wipro Ltd (0.94 percent), Tata Motors Ltd (0.64 percent) and Axis Bank Ltd (0.31 percent).
The rate of inflation in China slowed down in July from the previous month, showing signs of a gradual decline in price pressure to make room for monetary easing. Data from the National Bureau of Statistics show that the consumer price index of China rose 1.8 percent in July from a year earlier, down from 2.2 percent in June.
The diminishing inflation should be good news because it can help the government invigorate growth without much concern about the rising prices. Earlier, Beijing said that China's consumer price inflation target for the year would be around 4 percent.
However, investors do have concerns of the weakening global economy with support from the U.S. and Europe having faded given their firm stance against additional quantitative easing for now. The U.S. Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank have not announced any bold stimulus measures to boost the financial condition.
Meanwhile, the Bank of Japan kept its key policy rate unchanged. Investors were expecting that the BoJ will need to expand its Asset Purchase Program with Japan's economy having lost its growth momentum faced with deflation and strengthening of the Japanese yen.