In South Korea, the Kospi added 0.44 percent, with automakers, steelmakers and retailers contributing to overall gains. Index bellwether Samsung Electronics added 0.77 percent in morning trade.
Down Under, the S&P/ASX 200 rose 0.44 percent, with the materials subindex leading gains in the morning as mining majors climbed. BHP was up 2.19 percent and Rio Tinto advanced 1.41 percent.
Gains seen in Asia morning trade came after new tariffs on U.S. goods announced by China on Friday pushed the trade dispute between the two countries back into the spotlight. China said it was preparing levies, ranging from 5 percent to 25 percent, on around $60 billion in U.S. imports, including many agriculture-related goods.
China said the latest duties would be implemented if the U.S. proceeded to impose more tariffs on Chinese goods. U.S. President Donald Trump had earlier this month asked the U.S. Trade Representative to consider increasing proposed tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods to 25 percent, from an initially announced 10 percent rate.
Wall Street gained on Friday as investors digested the latest jobs data. Nonfarm payrolls rose by 157,000 in July, missing the 190,000 forecast in a Reuters poll, although the broad employment picture remained strong. Average hourly earnings increased 2.7 percent compared to one year ago while last month’s headline jobs number was revised upward to 248,000 from 213,000.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.54 percent, or 136.42 points, to close at 25,462.58 on Friday. Other major indexes also saw moderate gains.
In foreign exchange, the offshore yuan was steady after firming on Friday when the People’s Bank of China moved to stabilize the currency following recent weakness. The offshore yuan last traded at 6.8436 to the dollar — stronger than Friday’s intraday weak point, which exceeded 6.9.
The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of currencies, firmed to 95.246 at 8:02 a.m. HK/SIN. Against the yen, the dollar traded at 111.23.