Asian markets rose Tuesday as an Alibaba-fuelled surge in Hong Kong provided a much-needed boost to sentiment ahead of a slew of earnings reports from the world's biggest firms and an expected Federal Reserve interest rate hike.

A shock cut in US retail titan Walmart's profit outlook fanned concerns that surging inflation and rising borrowing costs are hammering consumer spending and could send the economy into recession.

The news left markets concerned about what's to come from other Wall Street giants this week -- including Apple, Amazon, McDonald's and General Motors.

Adding to the unease was news that Russia's Gazprom will cut back gas deliveries to Germany, citing a faulty turbine, less than a week since restarting flows after 10 days of maintenance work.

But after a cautious start to the day, most Asian markets enjoyed a healthy run-up.

Hong Kong led the way in reaction to news that market heavyweight Alibaba will seek a primary listing in the city, which could pave the way for it to be traded by mainland Chinese investors.

The move from a secondary listing would come as several Chinese firms listed in the United States grow increasingly worried about a regulatory crackdown by authorities as part of a stand-off in the tech sector between Washington and Beijing.

It also further indicated the firm is more confident that a long-running period of clampdowns by China on the industry is coming to an end.

"This could boost its liquidity after a year-long sell-off triggered by China's economic slowdown and Beijing's crackdown on its most potent internet firms," said Stephen Innes at SPI Asset Management.

The over five percent surge in Alibaba gave a boost to other tech giants -- with, Tencent, NetEase and Bilibili all up.

There were also gains in Shanghai, Sydney, Seoul, Singapore, Manila and Jakarta, though Tokyo, Taipei and Wellington slipped.

London was on the front foot in the morning, though Paris and Frankfurt dipped.

Analysts were cautious about the outlook for world markets, despite a positive run-up in July.

"This is most likely a bear market rally and there are significant risks still facing this market," Katerina Simonetti, at Morgan Stanley Private Wealth Management, told Bloomberg Television.

"We're probably going to be seeing a lot of choppiness and potentially some further declines in the market before the year-end."

Hong Kong was given a much-needed lift by news that market heavyweight Alibaba will seek a primary listing in the city
Hong Kong was given a much-needed lift by news that market heavyweight Alibaba will seek a primary listing in the city AFP / STR

For now, there will be little respite for investors from the Fed as it continues to ramp up borrowing costs, with another 75 basis point lift expected this week, and more before the end of the year.

Several officials at the bank, including boss Jerome Powell, have suggested they are determined to bring inflation down from four-decade highs, even at the expense of economic growth.

Still, market strategist Louis Navellier said they could start to loosen monetary policy in the new year when the economy shows strains.

"Uncertainty is high as to the Fed's willingness to keep tightening if the economy slows significantly, with many forecasts projecting that the Fed will reverse and start cutting rates by the summer of 2023 as the economy slows and inflation wanes," he said in a note.

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: DOWN 0.2 percent at 27,655.21 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng Index: UP 1.7 percent at 20,905.88 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: UP 0.8 percent at 3,277.44 (close)

London - FTSE 100: UP 0.5 percent at 7,338.96

Euro/dollar: UP at $1.0220 from $1.0223 Monday

Pound/dollar: UP at $1.2047 from $1.2046

Euro/pound: UP at 84.86 pence from 84.83 pence

Dollar/yen: DOWN at 136.62 yen from 136.65 yen

West Texas Intermediate: UP 1.9 percent at $98.53 per barrel

Brent North Sea crude: UP 1.8 percent at $107.03 per barrel

New York - Dow: UP 0.3 percent at 31,990.04 (close)