North Korea fired what looked to be a ballistic missile near its coast. The missile reportedly landed in the Sea of Japan after staying in the air for 6 minutes. This is the ninth missile the hermit state has tested this year, as it faces increasing pressure from the U.S. and historical ally China over its missile testing program.
The Nikkei 225 edged lower by 0.06 percent while the Kospi added 0.07 percent in early Friday trade. The Kospi is trading at an all-time high and in its sixth consecutive session of gains.
Japan's Nikkei dipped 0.1 percent though MSCI Japan rose 0.4 percent in dollar terms .
The Nikkei 225 jumped 0.79 percent in early Wednesday trade while the Kospi rose a more modest 0.31 percent. Australia's benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index edged higher by 0.1 percent.
The Nikkei 225 dipped 0.16 percent in Tuesday trade while the ASX 200 declined 0.05 percent. South Korea's benchmark Kospi index was up by 0.14 percent.
The Nikkei 225 was 0.34 percent higher. Australia's ASX 200 added 0.66 percent, driven largely by its energy and materials sub-indexes which were up 1.85 percent and 1.43 percent respectively.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan slipped 0.2 percent, on track for a weekly loss of 0.5 percent.
Japan's Nikkei shed 1.2 percent, Australian shares lost 1.1 percent and South Korea's Kospi declined 0.5 percent.
The Nikkei fell 0.62 percent by 8:36 a.m. as the safe-haven yen strengthened in the wake of renewed political risk.
The Kospi added 0.3 percent. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 rose 0.38 percent, due largely to gains in its energy sub-index, which was up 0.9 percent.
Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 index sank declined 0.18 percent. The Kospi shrugged off North Korea's latest missile launch and reversed earlier losses to trade 0.39 percent higher. The S&P/AX 200 did likewise and was up 0.08 percent.
Japan's Nikkei stock index slipped 0.4 percent in early trading.
The Nikkei 225 edged up 0.2 percent while South Korea's benchmark Kospi index added 0.55 percent on Thursday. The ASX 200 was slightly higher, gaining 0.04 percent in early trade.
Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 index was up 0.45 percent while the Kospi edged up by 0.24 percent.
Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index trader higher by 0.3 percent. Markets on the mainland were softer, with the Shanghai Composite sliding 0.2 percent and the Shenzhen Composite lower by 0.119 percent.
Asian markets were higher across the board, with Japan's Nikkei 225 surging 1.68 percent. The Nikkei share average also reached its highest level since December 2015.
Commodity prices across the board tumbled, led by oil , which fell by 5 percent in overnight trading on concerns of a supply glut with analysts forecasting further losses.
Japan is closed for the Golden Week holiday. South Korea's KOSPI bucked the weaker trend and was up 0.5 percent after touching an all-time high earlier in the session on strong corporate earnings.
Oil prices pulled higher after a sharp fall on Tuesday on technical selling in a market already worried about oversupply and following a rise in output from several members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.
In Asia, Samsung Electronics gained 1.6 percent, helping to lift Kospi index 0.7 percent.
Japan's Nikkei fell 0.1 percent as March industrial output and household spending fell more than expected and consumer inflation remained tepid. But the index was poised for a 3.3 percent weekly gain, its strongest since November.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 0.1 percent after hitting its highest level since June 2015 on Wednesday. Japan's Nikkei dipped 0.3 percent.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.1 percent, hovering near their highest since June 2015. Early Asian stock markets such as New Zealand and South Korea were key gainers.
Asian markets were higher across the board. Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 index surged 1.33 percent on the back of the French polls while the Kospi gained 0.3 percent.