In Asia, stocks in Japan appeared poised to rise, with Nikkei futures in Chicago up 0.45 percent at 19,950 and Osaka futures higher by 0.25 percent at 19,910. Both were higher than the Nikkei 225’s Thursday close of 19,860.03.

Australian SPI futures rose 0.56 percent to trade at 5,770 against the S&P/ASX 200’s last close of 5,738.128.

Over on Wall Street, stocks gained following the release of stronger economic data. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 0.65 percent or 135.53 points to close at 21,144.18, the S&P 500 finished 0.76 percent or 18.26 points higher at 2,430.06 while the Nasdaq was up 0.78 percent or 48.31 points at 6,246.83.

The dollar was firmer against a basket of six major currencies: The dollar index traded at 97.205 at 6:36 a.m. HK/SIN, which was off session lows of around 96.9. Dollar/yen was also stronger, with the greenback fetching 111.39 yen — higher than levels around the 110 handle seen earlier in the week.

Oil prices were mixed on worries about oversupply in markets. U.S. crude settled 4 cents higher at $48.36 a barrel and Brent crude settled 13 cents down at $50.63. Prices fell after settlement despite the decrease in U.S. crude stocks, Reuters reported.

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