Japan's Nikkei stock average rose 2.5 percent on Tuesday after Wall Street climbed on hopes the recession is easing, with Honda Motor Co up after the yen retreated against the dollar.

But gains were expected to be limited before key U.S. and Japanese data, including U.S. housing starts later on Tuesday and Japan's first-quarter gross domestic product on Wednesday.

The benchmark Nikkei gained 223.66 points to 9,262.35, while the broader Topix rose 2.3 percent to 879.66.

(Reporting by Elaine Lies)