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Asian shares up as Ukraine fears ease

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HONG KONG — Asian markets mostly rose on Wednesday, following a global rally on easing fears about Ukraine after Russian President Vladimir Putin played down the prospect of war. 

His comments, which sent the S&P 500 on Wall Street to a new record high, fuelled a second day of buying in much of Asia. The dollar edged up against the yen as investors became more confident in higher-risk assets.

Australian shares were also boosted by better than expected growth data. But Shanghai and Hong Kong edged lower as China's leaders tempered expectations for the world's No.2 economy this year with a modest forecast for expansion.

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