A security guard takes off his protective mask at the entrance to the Shanghai Stock Exchange Building.

Yves Dean | Getty Images

SINGAPORE – Asia Pacific stocks were mixed in trading on Thursday as investors watched mainland China stocks move as they returned from the New Year holiday.

The Shanghai Composite rose 1.6% in early trading while the Shenzhen component gained 0.756%.

The Nikkei 225 in Japan was above the flatline while the Topix index fell 0.39%. South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.39%.

In Australia, the S & P / ASX 200 traded slightly higher.

According to seasonally adjusted estimates released Thursday by the country’s statistics bureau, the unemployment rate in Australia fell to 6.4% in January. This compared to an unemployment rate of 6.6% in December.

The broadest MSCI index for stocks in the Asia-Pacific region outside of Japan has barely changed.

Oil prices jump

Oil prices rose on the morning of Asian trading hours, with the international benchmark’s Brent crude oil futures rising 1.48% to $ 65.29 a barrel. US crude oil futures rose 1.32% to $ 61.95 a barrel.

The US dollar index, which tracks the greenback versus a basket of its peers, hit 90.873 after a recent surge from below 90.3.

The Japanese yen was trading at 105.75 per dollar, weaker than below 105.6 against the greenback earlier this week. The Australian dollar was trading at $ 0.7757 after hitting a level of $ 0.78 at the start of the trading week.