(Reuters) -- Most Asian stock markets ended steady to slightly firmer on Monday, though gains were capped by profit-taking in banking and commodities-related shares as investors waited to see if European leaders can deliver a solution to the region's debt crisis at a summit later in the week.
    
The Nikkei rose 0.6 percent to 8,695.98, adding to its 6 percent gain last week and jumping above its 25-day moving average of 8,573. The broader Topix also added 0.6 percent to 748.61.   

Volume was thin, with 1.43 billion shares changing hands on the main board, less than Friday's 1.57 billion shares and down 11 percent from the 20-day average volume. Twice as many shares declined as advancing issues.

Emerging equity markets gained some support from stronger European stocks, which rose on growing hopes of a sweeping solution to the debt crisis as French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel meet ahead of the Friday summit.   

In the near term, markets will still focus on the growing crisis in Europe, but I think investors are on alert for a bad outcome, said Jakarta-based John Teja, director of broker Ciptadana Securities.   

Late buying helped recoup losses for most share markets. Stocks in Indonesia, Malaysia and the
Philippines finished marginally, while Singapore edged down 0.3 percent.   

Vietnam stocks rose 1.9 percent as optimism about local economic outlook and easing inflation boosted hopes for interest rate cuts.   

The Thai stock market was shut on Monday for a holiday, and will reopen on Tuesday.   

The Philippine market reported $2.3 million in inflows on Monday, adding to $82 million of inflows last week, while Indonesia had $32 million in inflows after $62 million in inflows last week, Thomson Reuters data showed.   

Malaysian bourse said foreign investors bought shares worth about 95 million ringgit ($30.36 million). Investors took profits in banking and commodities-related stocks that were among the biggest gainers last week after six major central banks moved to help ease a liquidity crunch squeezing European banks.   

Among actively-traded stocks, Singapore-listed palm oil plantation firm Wilmar International Ltd fell 0.8 percent and Malaysia's biggest lender Malayan Banking Bhd eased 0.12 percent.   

In Jakarta, a combination of low interst rates and easing inflation boosted property stocks, led by a 7.3 percent rise in PT Surya Semesta Internusa Tbk and a 3.4 percent gain in PT Alam Sutera Realty Tbk.   

Broader Asian markets posted limited gains, with the MSCI's broadest index of Asia Pacific shares outside Japan  up 0.27 percent by 0900 GMT.

(Reuters Writer Mari Saito contributed to this report.)

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