(MENAFN - AFP) Asian markets were mixed on Wednesday following a strong lead from Wall Street, with investors biding their time as they await the end of a crucial Federal Reserve policy meeting.
With few other trading cues, the main focus is on the Fed meeting, which is expected to see policymakers begin reeling in the bank's massive stimulus programme.
Tokyo's benchmark Nikkei 225 index rose 193.69 points to 14,505.36, while the Topix index of all first-section shares added 0.97 percent, or 11.43 points, to 1,193.07.
"Japan stock investors are encouraged by the relative resilience in both the dollar and in US indices' apparent acceptance of at least a modest amount of Fed tapering," said Tachibana Securities market adviser Kenichi Hirano.
"A lot (on Thursday) will depend on how US markets react to the central bank's decision -- as well as its rationale for its course of action," he told Dow Jones Newswires.
Uniqlo clothing chain operator Fast Retailing was up 3.26 percent at 36,350 yen while industrial robotics maker Fanuc advanced 2.42 percent to 16,880 yen.
Exporters were generally higher with Toyota rising 1.44 percent to 6,330 yen and Sony up 0.85 percent at 2,133 yen.
The Sydney index ended 0.25 percent lower, shedding 13.1 points, to 5,238.1 while Hong Kong eased 0.27 percent, or 63.07 points, to 23,117.45. Seoul was closed for a public holiday.
On currency markets, the dollar pushed back against the yen on the expected tapering -- which boosts demand for the greenback as there is less cash swirling around financial markets.
The dollar bought 99.02 yen, compared with 99.14 yen in New York in Tuesday, while the euro was at 1.3353 and 132.24 yen against 1.3356 and 132.38 yen.
On oil markets, New York's main contract, West Texas Intermediate for delivery in October was up 94 cents at 106.36, while Brent North Sea crude for November was down 41 cents to 108.20.
Gold was 1,305.40 an ounce at 0805 GMT compared with 1,319.11 late Tuesday.
In other markets:
-- Taipei fell 0.49 percent, or 40.60 points, to 8,209.18.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co shed 2.37 percent to Tw103.0 while chip design house MediaTek was 0.54 percent lower at Tw370.0.
-- Manila lost 0.16 percent, or 10.18 points, to end at 6,333.96.
-- Wellington rose 0.12 percent, or 5.80 points, to 4,703.83.
Air New Zealand gained 1.83 percent to NZ1.39 while Contact Energy was 2.32 percent higher at NZ5.29