|Asia shares up ahead of Yellen testimony
Asia's markets edged up Tuesday, with investors sitting on the sidelines as they await the first testimony by the Federal Reserve's new head to discover her plans for its stimulus program.
Janet Yellen, who took over as the bank's chair at the start of the month, will testify to a House of Representatives committee later in the day on the state of the economy and the course of monetary policy, AFP reports.
Sydney rose 0.62 percent, or 32.4 points, to close at 5,254.5 and Seoul added 0.46 percent, or 8.76 points, to 1,932.06.
Hong Kong jumped 1.78 percent, or 383.72 points, to 21,962.98 and Shanghai rose 0.84 percent, or 17.60 points, to 2,103.67.
Tokyo was closed for a public holiday.
The latest gains indicate traders' nerves may have settled after the turmoil seen earlier February when the Fed said it would further reduce its bond-buying scheme and US and Chinese manufacturing data came in below forecast.
Markets brushed off a second straight set of poor jobs data Friday, with some blaming severe winter weather for the weak growth, while also pointing to positive news such as a rise in labor force participation.
Yellen's testimony will be pored over to see if she gives any indication that the central bank will slow down its stimulus tapering. In December the Fed said it would cut its monthly purchases by US$10 billion to US$65 billion. It then announced a similar move this month, sending markets spinning.
Credit Agricole said investors would be keen to see if she maintains a doveish bias on the drawdown, against the backdrop of a more hawkish policymaking committee in the Fed.