Asian shares mixed as markets show life on Wall Street rebound

Asian shares were mixed on Tuesday, but showing signs of life after recent heavy selling after Wall Street snapped a two-day losing streak on Monday.

Japan's Nikkei 225 rose 0.82% as the dollar rose mildly against the yen, but the Shanghai Composite edged down 0.80% and the Hang Seng fell 1.09%.

Elsewhere, Australia's S&P/ASX 200 added 0.6%, South Korea's KOSPI was up 0.1%, and Singapore's Singapore Straits Time Index added 0.8%.

Asia is recovering from some heavy selling in recent sessions--last week the Nikkei suffered its worst week in three years and on Monday the Australian benchmark sank 1.3%, as concerns over Ukraine along with a selloff in U.S. technology stocks weighed on regional sentiment.

The main economic event this week for Asian markets will come on Wednesday morning, when China releases its first-quarter growth numbers. Persistent concerns over the state over the Chinese economy have weighed on stocks, especially in Hong Kong.

In corporate news, Rio Tinto Ltd (RIO.ASX) rose by 0.2% in Sydney after the miner reported weak output in the first quarter.

Fujitsu Ltd. (6702.TOK) rose 1.2% and Panasonic added 0.6% in Tokyo after the Nikkei reported that the two companies have agreed to establish a new company, as early as this fall, to unify their design and development operations for system chips.

Overnight the Dow 30 rose 0.91%, the S&P 500 index rose 0.82%, while the Nasdaq index rose 0.57%.

The Commerce Department reported earlier that U.S. retail sales rose 1.1% in March, exceeding expectations for a 0.8% gain. Retail sales in February were revised up to a 0.7% increase from a previously estimated 0.3% rise.

Core retail sales, which exclude automobiles, rose 0.7% last month, beating expectations for a 0.5% reading, after a 0.3% gain in February

Consumer demand drives the bulk of U.S. economic output, and the numbers fueled expectations that the U.S. economy continues to improve and will bolster corporate fundamentals up with it.

The data took back some of last week's strong losses by bringing in the bottom fishers.

The Biotech, Internet and other tech companies plunged last week on concerns that valuations have grown too high after a five-year bull market fueled in part by loose monetary policies, though Monday's data fueled hopes that more defensive plays may prove to be good buys going forward.

Elsewhere in the U.S., data revealed U.S. business inventories rose less than expected in February.

In a report, Census Bureau reported earlier that U.S. business inventories rose 0.4% in February from 0.4% in the preceding month.

Analysts were expecting a 0.5% reading in February.

After the close of European trade, the DJ Euro Stoxx 50 rose 0.39%, France's CAC 40 rose 0.43%, while Germany's DAX rose 0.26%. Meanwhile, in the U.K. the FTSE 100 rose 0.34%.

In the U.S. on Tuesday, Fed Chair Janet Yellen is to speak; her comments will be closely watched.