HONG KONG: Asian markets were mixed on Thursday as the Greek crisis continued to cast a shadow, while dealers got some upbeat news in data showing Japan's economy grew faster than expected.
The euro also edged back up after plunging to four-month lows against the dollar on Wednesday, with investors increasingly nervous that Athens will eventually exit the eurozone.
Tokyo fell 0.20 percent by the break, giving up early morning gains under pressure from Europe's woes, and Sydney fell 0.46 percent.
Hong Kong added 0.63 percent, Shanghai climbed 0.72 percent and Seoul was 0.55 percent higher.
The region took a breather from the recent sell-off caused by May 6 polls in Greece and France that saw a massive backlash against austerity measures.
"We've seen quite a retreat since last Monday (May 7), and people are asking when it will bottom out, and we are seeing a bit of that now," said Justin Harper, market strategist at IG Markets.
In Greece a senior judge was named prime minister and charged with holding fresh elections after more than a week of talks between party leaders failed to muster a coalition.
Economists fear the deadlock -- and elections next month are likely to see anti-austerity parties succeed -- will eventually mean Greece will not qualify for more bailout money, and in turn default and leave the eurozone.
In Japan the government released data showing the economy grew a faster-than-expected 1.0 percent on-quarter in the January-March period, indicating a slow recovery boosted by reconstruction from last year's earthquake tsunami. (AFP)