Asian shares mixed as investors focus on US jobs report

<p>The data will bring clues as to when the US Federal Reserve will start raising interest rates.</p>

Asian equities ended the week on a mixed note ahead of the release of the US nonfarm payrolls report due later today (August 7th).

Wall Street tumbled overnight, with the Nasdaq Composite closing 1.6 per cent lower, as investors awaited the job report.

Analysts expect the data will bring clues as to when the Federal Reserve will start raising interest rates. Many expect the data to show employers added 225,000 jobs and the unemployment rate held at 5.3 per cent, which would reinforce the case for a rate hike as early as September.

Meanwhile, Chinese stocks surged on hopes that authorities may soon intervene to stabilise the stock market, amid reports that trillions of yuan will likely re-enter the equity market from several China funds.

The Shanghai Composite Index gained 2.2 per cent to 3744.41 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng was up 0.7 per cent to 24552.47. Tokyo's Nikkei 225 edged up 0.3 per cent to 20724.56 and Sydney's S&P/ASX 200 dropped 2.4 per cent to 5474.78. Seoul's Kospi edged down 0.1 per cent to 2,010.75.

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