Asian stocks, oil and most metals rose on Friday after a slew of Chinese data showed the world's third-largest economy is on a brisk recovery path, while the yen dipped against the dollar.

Shares in Europe were also expected to open higher, spurred by China and gains on Wall Street overnight as investors reacted to a raft of upbeat economic reports. U.S. stock futures rose 0.6 percent.

China's strong rebound from the global downturn has boosted many of its Asian neighbors and buoyed markets from equities to commodities, even as consumer demand in the region's key Western export markets remains sluggish.

Stocks in Hong Kong, a key gateway to China for international investors, led regional gains with a jump of 1.7 percent <.HSI>. Property stocks were particularly firm after a recent sell-off, with Hang Lung Properties <0101.HK> surging 3.3 percent.

The market was crazy, with the index jumping a few hundred points after the (China) data with banks and automobiles leading the rebound, said Francis Lun, general manager at Fulbright Securities.

But the Shanghai Composite Index <.SSEC> gave up early gains as investors took profits.

China reported on Friday that industrial growth in November accelerated to 19.2 percent from a year earlier, beating market expectations and its fastest pace since June 2007, while investment expansion remained robust.

Chinese imports surged 26.7 percent, their first rise in 13 months, though exports disappointed slightly with a drop of 1.2 percent.

The MSCI index of Asia Pacific stocks outside Japan rose almost 0.9 percent <.MIAPJ0000PUS>, with the energy sector providing the biggest lift as data showed Chinese refiners processed crude oil at a record rate last month, underlining signs that global energy demand is picking up along with the economic recovery.

The Thomson Reuters index of Asia ex-Japan equities was also up 0.9 percent <.TRXFLDAXPU>.

The MSCI ex-Japan index has jumped 65 percent this year despite a consolidation that set in around mid-October as some investors feared share valuations may have outpaced economic fundamentals.

A decline in the U.S. October trade deficit also reassured investors on Friday that the world's largest economy was on a steady albeit slow recovery path.

Japan's Nikkei share average <.N225> rose almost 2.5 percent as the Chinese data boosted sentiment and as a weaker yen helped exporters such as TDK Corp <6762.T>, which surged more than 6 percent.

The yen lost ground against the dollar, dented by a rise in sterling after Moody's analysts said there was no threat to ratings of the UK and United States at the moment. Traders said investors were looking for reasons to liquidate long yen positions as business winds down for the year.

The dollar rose 0.5 percent to 88.68 yen and the euro was up 0.9 percent at 131.04 yen. It was steady at $1.4725.

The dollar index, a gauge of its performance against six major currencies, was little changed at 76.049 <.DXY>.


Other data released on Friday showed the Chinese economy has also tentatively shaken off a bout of profit-eating deflation as the consumer price index turned positive in November after nine straight months of declines.

Emerging markets like China have dominated investment fund flows this year as they snap back from the global downturn faster and more decisively than large advanced economies.

Emerging market stock funds have seen inflows of $75 billion so far this year as countries like China snap back from the slowdown, contrasting with the $83 billion redeemed from combined developed market equity funds, EPFR Global, which tracks funds, said on Friday.

Equity funds focused on Brazil, Russia, India and China extended their inflow streak to 13 consecutive weeks in the week to Dec 9, EPFR reported.

Gold prices rose toward $1,140 an ounce as the dollar steadied. Still, gold prices have slipped nearly 8 percent from an all-time high of $1,226.1 on Dec 3 as the dollar rallied last week, contrary to market expectations.

Copper futures rose 0.5 percent following six days of losses, with gains bolstered by the China data.

Chinese buying, a weaker dollar and a surge by investors into commodities have boosted copper prices more than 120 percent this year, but further gains are likely to be tepid as trading activity slows down as the year draws to a close.

U.S. crude for January delivery rose 33 cents to $70.87 a barrel after hitting a two-month low on Thursday, its seventh straight losing session as ample supplies stoked worries about weak demand.

(Additional reporting by Donny Kwok in HONG KONG, Editing by Kim Coghill)