Asian equities were mostly higher early Monday, with investors encouraged by signs of a compromise in Greece's debt talks with its creditors.
After anxious depositors pulled billions of euros out of Greek banks last week, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras made a new offer of reforms on Sunday, showing a fresh willingness to make concessions that could unlock frozen aid and avert a default on the country's debts. Both sides are due to continue the negotiations at a crisis summit in Brussels this week.
On Friday, Wall Street finished lower, with major indices ending near their lows of the day. The blue-chip Dow and S&P 500 dropped 0.55 and 0.53 percent, respectively, while the Nasdaq Composite shed 0.31 percent following a record high in the previous session.
Nikkei rises 0.9%
Japan's Nikkei 225 advanced from the get-go, with a modestly weaker yen probably helping to drive sentiment. The dollar-yen nudged up 0.1 percent to 122.73 in early Asian trade.
Honda Motor is in focus after the company's U.S. unit said Friday it has linked the death of a woman in Los Angeles last September to the rupture of a Takata airbag inflator, bringing the number of fatalities related to the defective airbags to eight.
Shares of the carmaker rose 1.5 percent, while Takata declined 0.9 percent. Kospi jumps 0.4%
South Korea's key Kospi index hit a six-day high, thanks to a huge rally among the blue chips.
The bourse's top two weighted stocks Samsung Electronics and Hyundai Motor jumped 1.1 and 0.4 percent, respectively, while utility Kepco surged 4.2 percent on the back of news over the weekend that the state-run power firm will offer a temporary discount on its rates to households and small and medium-sized enterprises.
Consumer plays staged a comeback following recent losses due to the country's outbreak of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). AmorePacific elevated 0.5 percent, while major retailers Shinsegae and Lotte Shopping rallied more than 8.5 and 2.7 percent, respectively.
Hang Seng adds 0.5%
Hong Kong's Hang Seng index notched up in early trade amid news that the city's bourse is consulting investors over current rules which ban dual-class shares.
Mainland markets are closed on Monday for a national holiday after suffering its biggest weekly drop in seven years last Friday. The Shanghai Composite index tumbled 6.4 percent to settle at its lowest level since May 29.
ASX sheds 0.4%
Australia's S&P ASX 200 index dipped into negative territory amid continuing worries over Greece and as investors try to close their books for the June 30 end of the financial year.
"This is the final full week of the Australian financial year
Decliners were led by mining and energy counters. Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton fell 0.7 and 1.3 percent, respectively, while Santos and Origin Energy lost more than 2 percent each after crude oil prices fell more than 1 percent on Friday.