Asian Equities Higher on U.S. Lead

Japanese shares opened flat as investors await the latest policy decision from the Bank of Japan (BOJ), while other bourses in the region tracked their U.S. peers higher on the final trading day of the week.

The BOJ is expected to maintain its expansionary monetary stimulus at the conclusion of its two-day meeting on Friday. The central bank kept policy steady last month, but cut its forecasts for economic growth and inflation in its outlook statement.

Overnight, U.S. stocks finished modestly higher, with the S&P 500 settling at a record high amid slightly lower bond yields and as investors read mixed economic data as a sign that interest rates could stay lower for longer.