* Australia, NZ, HK closed for Christmas holiday
* European markets set to open flat
* Nikkei steady as yen weakens after disappointing data
* U.S. Treasury yields, dollar up after Monday's losses
* Oil prices rise on expected output cuts
By Nichola Saminather
SINGAPORE, Dec 27 Asian stocks were mostly
higher on Tuesday, in thin trade and with little to guide them
as most major markets were closed on Monday for Christmas
holidays, while the dollar reclaimed its losses from Monday.
Financial spreadbetter IG Markets is predicting a flat start
for Germany's DAX and France's CAC 40, with
Britain closed for a holiday in lieu of Christmas.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
was marginally higher, with Australia, New
Zealand and Hong Kong closed.
Japan's Nikkei closed little changed.
"It is the time of the year when markets trade with hushed
tones," Jingyi Pan, market strategist at IG, wrote in a note.
"The magnitude of moves could remain capped with thin market
trades expected to remain the case."
China's CSI 300 index was down 0.1 percent and the
Shanghai Composite slipped almost 0.2 percent, despite
positive data released on Tuesday.
The mainland's industrial sector profit rose 14.5 percent in
November from a year earlier, suggesting the economy was
improving, but policymakers noted growth was too dependent on a
rebound in the prices for oil products and iron and steel.
Southeast Asian stocks were up, with markets including
Indonesia and the Philippines posting gains of as
much as 1 percent.
On Friday, Wall Street closed slightly higher in thin trade.
The 10-year U.S. Treasury yield extended gains by almost 1
percent on Tuesday, more than recovering Monday's losses.
The previous session's declines came after data on Friday
showed U.S. consumer spending increased modestly in November as
household income failed to rise for the first time in nine
months. The data suggested the economy slowed in the fourth
quarter after growing briskly in the prior period.
Still the slowdown in growth is likely to be temporary, with
the labour market near full employment, house prices rising and
the stock market rallying close to record highs. Consumer
confidence, in addition, is at its highest level since July
European stocks were little changed on Friday,
although banks rose after Deutsche Bank and Credit
Suisse settled investigations into U.S. mortgage
securities sales, while Italy's government approved a bailout
for Monte dei Paschi bank.
"Shares are overbought and due for a bit of profit-taking
but moves toward a resolution of bank woes are helping in
Europe, global economic data is mostly good and the period
around Christmas/New Year is normally positive for shares,"
Shane Oliver, head of investment strategy at AMP Capital in
Sydney, wrote in a note.
The bounce in U.S. yields boosted the dollar, which also
recovered Monday's losses with a 0.2 percent gain to 117.37 yen
The yen retreated after data on Tuesday showed Japan's ion's
core consumer prices posted the ninth straight month of annual
declines in November, and household spending fell.
The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against
a basket of six global peers, was little changed at 103.01,
about 0.6 percent below the highest level since December 2002
hit a week ago.
The euro was steady at $1.0449 on Tuesday.
In commodities, oil prices were steady, as markets took a
wait-and-see approach to output cuts by both OPEC and non-OPEC
producers that are due to start in less than a week.
U.S. crude added 0.1 percent to $53.10 a barrel.
Global benchmark Brent slipped 0.1 percent to $55.10.
Spot gold rose 0.5 percent to $1,139.42 an ounce,
although the stronger dollar capped gains.
(Reporting by Nichola Saminather; Editing by Eric Meijer)