Japan's Nikkei share average opened slightly firmer on Tuesday after surprise weakness in U.S. manufacturing data fanned renewed speculation the U.S. Federal Reserve may step in to boost growth.

The Nikkei .N225 rose 0.2 percent to 9,020.04, with immediate resistance seen near the 9,100 mark, while the broader Topix .TOPX rose 0.5 percent to 773.57.