Asia markets enjoy relief rally on 15 November
An employee of a foreign exchange trading company works under a monitor displaying the Japanese yen's exchange rate against the US dollar (top), and the Nikkei share average in Tokyo on 15 November, 2013 (Reuters).

Asian markets enjoyed a relief-rally on 15 November, with the Japanese Nikkei finishing above 15,000 points for the first time since May, after US Federal Reserve Vice Chair Janet Yellen signalled her support for the Fed's ultra-easy monetary policy.

Markets in China were also supported by news that the government could release a more detailed version of the Third Plenum communique next week - investors await a clearer picture of Beijing's reform road-map.

The Japanese Nikkei finished 1.95% higher or 289.51 points at 15,165.92.

Australia's S&P/ASX finished 0.86% higher or 46.30 points at 5,401.70.

South Korea's Kospi finished 1.94% higher or 38.08 points at 2,005.64.

The Shanghai Composite finished 1.68% higher or 35.32 points at 2,135.83.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng was trading 1.68% higher or 379.82 points to 23,028.97.

Financial markets in India were closed for a public holiday and trading will resume on 18 November.

Japanese equities gained on the back of a weaker yen, which was pulled down by a stronger US dollar that breached the 100 yen level overnight following Fed Vice Chair Yellen's comments.

In the US, speaking at her confirmation hearing before the US Senate Banking Committee, Yellen said the Fed would not reduce its $85bn-a-month bond-buying stimulus program anytime soon.

"These purchases have made a meaningful contribution to economic growth and improving the outlook," she said on 14 November.

Standard Chartered said in a note to clients: "The passing of the baton to Janet Yellen will be one of the most significant events for financial markets for years to come as the future trajectory of US monetary policy will cast a long shadow across all asset classes. Yellen's credentials as a committed dove are well established and her prepared testimony reflects this outlook".

"However, we do not think her prepared remarks represent a departure from the previous policy trajectory and expect her to offer a more balanced and nuanced tone than her introductory remarks during the Q&A session of her confirmation hearing. If correct, this could offer near-term broad support for the US dollar", the British bank added.

Wall Street Up

On Wall Street, indices ended higher with the Dow and the S&P 500 finishing at record highs as investors cheered Yellen's remarks.

The Dow finished 54.59 points higher or 0.4% at 15,876.22.

The S&P 500 closed 8.62 points higher or 0.5% at 1,790.62.

The Nasdaq ended 9.57 points higher or 0.3% at 3,415.14.

"Everyone is focused on this Yellen hearing, clearly she is going to continue the policies in place. It's always nice to hear it reaffirmed," Peter Sidoti of Sidoti & Co told CNBC, referring to Yellen's 14 November testimony.

Company Stock Movements

In Tokyo, PlayStation maker Sony jumped 3.3% ahead of the release of the highly-anticipated PlayStation 4 gaming console.

The PlayStation 4 was released across North America at 5:00 hrs GMT on 15 November.

Mitsubishi UFJ Financial gained 1.4% while rival Mizuho Financial rose 1.9% after the banks raised their full-year profit forecasts for the 2013 financial year.

In Shanghai, China Merchants Bank soared 10%. Brokerage firm Haitong Securities surged 9% while rival Citic Securities rallied 7%.

In Sydney, GrainCorp, eastern Australia's largest crop handler, dropped 4% after it warned that its earnings could come under pressure owing to a drought in certain parts of the country.

In Seoul, index heavyweight Samsung Electronics shot up 2.7% while automaker Hyundai Motor moved up 2.5%.