Rumours of a potential cash reserve ratio cut for China's banks boosted mainland Chinese equities on Friday, which struck a two-month high and retreated. The rally in Shanghai helped regional markets pare losses.

The Shanghai Composite index was trading 0.07% higher, or 1.44 points, to 2083.09, after rallying over 5%.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng was trading 0.31% lower or 70.52 points to 22468.73.

The Japanese Nikkei finished 0.75% lower or 102.83 points at 13,650.11.

Australia's S&P/ASX finished 0.75% lower or 38.50 points at 5,113.90.

South Korea's Kospi finished 0.20% lower or 3.80 points at 1,920.11.

Asian markets opened lower on Friday morning after Wall Street indices tumbled overnight on fears of Federal Reserve QE tapering.

Wall Street Down

On Wall Street, the Dow finished 225.47 points lower, or 1.47%, at 15,112.19, pulled down by a 7% percent drop in Cisco. The S&P 500 closed 24.07 points lower, or 1.43%, at 1,661.32 while the Nasdaq closed 63.16 points lower, or 1.72%, at 3,606.12.

Company Stock Movements

In Shanghai, mid-sized lender China Minsheng Banking rallied over 8% while rivals Shanghai Pudong Development Bank and China Merchants Bank gained 7% and 6% respectively.

Gold miner Lingbao Gold jumped 5% while rival Zhongjin Gold shot up 4.6%, after gold futures expiring in December shot up 2.06% or $27.50 to $1,360.90 an ounce in the US.

Index heavyweight Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) shot up 4.1% by the midday break while oil and gas major PetroChina gained 3.9%.

In Hong Kong, gold miner Zijin Mining Group added 3.3%. ICBC added 2.1% while China Construction Bank (CCB) gained 1.7%.

In Tokyo, Japan Petroleum Exploration moved up 2.4%, while oil major Inpex gained 1.2%.

Property developer Tokyo Tatemono added 1.6%. Subaru-maker Fuji Heavy and Fuji Electric gained 1% each

Construction equipment maker Jubota lost over 2% while rival Komatsu lost 1.9%.

Consumer electronics major Sharp was down 1.9%, gaming firm Nintendo lost 1.7%, while Yamaha Motor shed 1.1%.

In Seoul, shipping company Hyundai Merchant Marine jumped 9% while Hanjin Shipping shot up 6% on news that the two Koreas have agreed to re-open the Kaesong industrial complex.

Automaker Hyundai Motor jumped 1.5% after top executive Yoon Gap-han pledged to restart negotiations with labour unions to resolve a wage dispute.

LG Electronics lost 1.7% while index heavyweight and rival Samsung Electronics shed 0.3%.

In Sydney, Gold miner Perseus Mining surged 15.6% while rivals Kingsgate Consolidated and Newcrest Mining jumped 7% and 4.4% respectively.

Oil and gas explorer Santos shot up 3.9% after it reported that first half net profit rose 3% on the back of higher natural gas prices.

Iron ore miner Fortescue Metals fell over 3% on news that Taiwan's largest company Formosa Plastics has acquired a minority stake in the Australian firm's Iron Bridge project for about $1.15bn

Australia and New Zealand Banking Group dropped 2.9%. The bank warned that lower interest rates were likely to pull down margins in its Asian business in the second half of the financial year to September.

Japan's Mizuho Financial Group is negotiating to acquire ANZ's minority stake in Bank Pan Indonesia. Talks are believed to be at an early stage and industry sources value the deal at around $570m (£368m, €428).

A sale would enable ANZ to return capital to shareholders and focus on organic growth in Indonesia. A successful deal would also reduce ANZ's capital burden.

Sportswear maker Billabong International lost 1.8%. Resources major BHP Billiton lost 1.3% on news that US authorities are investigating the miner for potential breaches of anticorruption laws.