Asian markets traded higher after the minutes of the US Federal Reserve's meeting sent a strong signal that it could increase interest rates in December. Investors consider this a vote of confidence in the health of the world's largest economy which in turn means a boon for the banking sector.
Data from CME Group, an American futures company, which is used by investors and traders to place bets on central bank policy, indicated a 68% probability of a rate increase in December.
The Japanese Nikkei 225 was trading at 19,892.46, up 1.24%, despite a disappointing report on exports and the fact that the Bank of Japan at its regular policy meeting left its policies unchanged. Japanese exports fell 2.1% in October compared to the same period last year, marking the first decline in more than a year.
It was recently reported that Japan's economy had deteriorated more severely than expected in the third quarter, leading to a second consecutive three-month decline, fulfilling the technical definition of a recession.
Australia's S&P/ASX 200 closed higher for the day at 5,242.60, up 2.13%. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index was up 1.15%, trading at 22,442.42, South Korea's KOSPI was trading higher by 1% at 1,982.45. India's BSE was trading higher by 0.98% at 25,732.84.
China's Shanghai Composite index was generally calmer compared to the rest of the indices, trading higher by 0.43% at 3,583.68. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan, MIAPJ0000PUS, added 1.5%.
Chris Weston, an analyst at brokerage IG, said though a rate increase would raise the cost of borrowings for companies, the firm outlook has wiped out some of the uncertainty that triggered market volatility in recent months.
In commodities, WTI crude oil was trading at $40.89 a barrel, up 0.34% while Brent was higher by 0.75% at $44.47 a barrel.