The Federal Reserve on Wednesday offered a strong signal that it was on track to raise interest rates sometime next year, altering a pledge to keep rates near zero for a "considerable time" in a show of confidence in the U.S. economy.
Asian share markets rallied on Thursday after U.S. stocks enjoyed their strongest session this year when the Federal Reserve sounded upbeat on the economy and promised to be patient in removing policy stimulus.
U.S. stocks fell for a third day in a volatile session Tuesday, led by declines in consumer discretionary and technology shares, while another drop in the Russian rouble added to worries about the global economy.
U.S. housing starts and permits fell in November, but remained at levels consistent with a gradually improving housing market. Groundbreaking declined 1.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual pace of 1.028 million units, the Commerce Department said on Tuesday. October's starts were revised up to a pace of 1.045 million units.
The dollar rose on Friday after upbeat U.S. data suggested weaker oil prices are providing additional momentum for the American economy, which also underpinned Asian shares.
The weakness of the rouble is hurting Russia, which has lost tens of billions of dollars because of sanctions imposed by the West in the Ukraine crisis, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said on Wednesday.
Global oil prices slid further on Friday, with Brent on track for the first weekly close below $70 a barrel since 2010, as strong U.S. employment data did little to lift the oil market's bearish mood a day after Saudi Arabia cut official selling prices.
The dollar marked a fresh seven-year high against the yen on Wednesday, which helped lift the Nikkei to a similar record, while oil prices recovered after data showed a drop in U.S. supply.
Oil prices, oil-related shares and oil-linked currencies all tumbled in Asia on Friday, in the wake of OPEC's decision to refrain from cutting output despite a huge oversupply.
With Russia's economy battered by economic sanctions and plunging oil prices, President Vladimir Putin has allowed the central bank to administer strong medicine, sharply raising interest rates even as it freed the rouble to float.
World stock markets and oil prices rallied on Friday, fueled by hopes for global growth after China rolled out a surprise interest rate cut and the European Central Bank indicated it would step up asset purchases to boost the euro zone economy.
Japan's finance minister warned on Friday about the yen's weakening, describing it as "too rapid", but he stuck to the government's stance of allowing markets to determine exchange rates and dismissed the need to intervene to halt the slide.
Asian stocks mostly fell on Thursday as fresh data signalling a further loss of momentum in China's economy weighed on sentiment, while the yen slid to multi-year lows against the dollar and euro.
Emerald-colored tea bushes blanketing the rolling hills of Nandi County have long provided a livelihood for small-scale farmers, helping make Kenya one of the world's biggest tea exporters.
Asian stocks dipped on Friday following fresh signs of slowing Chinese growth, with energy stocks depressed across the region as crude oil hovered near a four-year low in an oversupplied market.