Yuan finds lift on China's GDP and central bank

Reuters

Reuters

South Korea's Kospi was up 0.29% as index edged away from the 2,430 level.

Down under, the S&P/ASX 200 traded below the flat line, edging down by 0.35 percent. The Kospi stood at 2,425.65 at 8:10 a.m. HK/SIN.

Tokyo was closed for a public holiday.

Rob Subbaraman, chief economist for Asia ex-Japan at Nomura Holdings in Singapore, told Bloomberg News that while fiscal stimulus remains an important driver of growth "it's also encouraging to see more signs of rebalancing, with the pickup in retail sales growth".

The world's number two economy expanded an annualised 6.9 per cent in April-June, beating forecasts in an AFP survey and indicating it is stabilising after a years-long slowdown.

Also on the economic calendar, Singapore June non-oil exports (NODX) data is due.

The amount is 38.6 percent more than last week, according to data compiled by Chongqing-based Southwest Securities. The dollar index traded as low as 95.088 in the Friday session compared to a high of 95.834.

Against the yen, the greenback was firmer at 112.62 after sinking last Friday. Both had been down more than 2 percent in early trade.

As the main hurdle to more tightening from the Federal Reserve, inflation is expected to play a decisive role in central bank policy and influence macro market direction this year, said OANDA senior trader Stephen Innes in a Monday morning note.

The Australian dollar traded at USD 0.7824 at 7:55 a.m. HK/SIN after climbing for five straight sessions last week.

The Hang Seng index rose 0.3 percent, to 26,470.58 points, while the China Enterprises Index gained 0.5 percent, to 10,783.19 points.

In individual stocks, Hyundai was down 0.65 percent following news that unionized workers at the company had voted to go on strike in reaction to a breakdown in wage negotiations. S&P 500 and Dow Jones ended at record highs on Friday.

United States consumer prices were unchanged in June, data showed on Friday.

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