HONG KONG - Asian markets were mixed on Wednesday with uncertainty over a bailout for struggling Spain keeping traders on edge, but Sydney touched a 14-month high after the previous day’s interest rate cut.

The dollar and euro held on to recent gains against the yen on talk of another round of stimulus by the Bank of Japan (BoJ).

Hong Kong, which was returning after a two-day holiday, rose 0.23 percent, or 47.90 points, to 20,888.28. Sydney climbed 0.13 percent, or 5.6 points, to 4,438.6 but Tokyo fell 0.45 percent, or 39.18 points, to 8,746.87. Shanghai and Seoul were closed for public holidays. With Wall Street unable to provide a spark, regional trade was tepid as investors await policy meetings by the central banks of Europe and Japan as well as closely-watched US jobs figures later in the week.

The eurozone crisis continued to weigh after Spain’s Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said he was not planning to ask for a rescue package any time soon, despite the parlous state of the country’s finances and its dangerously high borrowing costs.

Spain, the eurozone’s fourth biggest economy, is required to make a formal demand for help in order to trigger the release of eurozone rescue funds and supportive action from the European Central Bank. Analysts had expected it to formally ask for help within days after last week unveiling an austerity budget widely seen as a precursor to a request. “There was little to encourage a bounce across the risk spectrum overnight with moderate weakness from US equities alongside easing expectations Spain will imminently seek financial aid,” said a currency analyst.

 at GO Markets in a note, according to Dow Jones Newswires.

In Sydney the S&P/ASX 200 at one point rose 0.49 percent to a 14-month high of 4,454.6 before easing, with traders extending Tuesday’s advances after the Reserve Bank of Australia cut interest rates.

“There is also some anticipation of another interest rate cut and it’s certainly our view that the RBA will cut again next month,” said Macquarie Private Wealth division director Martin Lakos.

However, figures showing the trade deficit had soared to more than US$2 billion in August owing to the slowdown in China tempered risk sentiment.

In currency trade investors speculated about the possibility of another round of monetary easing by the Bank of Japan, with expectations raised by pressure from new Economy Minister Seiji Maehara to do more, said Hideyuki Ishiguro of Okasan Securities.

Maehara, a senior ruling party lawmaker who was appointed economy minister when Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda reshuffled his cabinet Monday, has been advocating aggressive credit easing and more measures to guide the yen lower.

The BoJ holds a two-day rate-setting meeting from Thursday.

The dollar was at 78.22 yen in European trade, against 78.15 yen in New York late Tuesday. The euro bought $1.2927 and 101.15 yen against $1.2920 and 100.96 yen in US trade.

On Wall Street the Dow dropped 0.24 percent, but the S&P 500 was flat while the Nasdaq gained 0.21 percent.

Oil prices fell. New York’s main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in November, shed 55 cents to $91.34 a barrel and Brent North Sea crude for November delivery slipped 94 cents to $110.63.

Gold was at $1,778.50 at 1045 GMT compared with $1,779.60 on Tuesday.

In other markets:

— Singapore was flat, losing 2.00 points to close at 3,077.14.

Wilmar International shed 1.25 percent to Sg$3.16 and Keppel Land fell 0.85 percent to Sg$3.52.

— Taipei fell 0.44 percent, or 34.05 points, to 7,684.63.

Hon Hai Precision dropped 0.33 percent to Tw$91.4 while TSMC was 0.22 percent higher at Tw$89.8.

— Manila was 0.50 percent higher, adding 26.84 points to 5,375.52.

SM Investments gained 2.70 percent to 760 pesos while Ayala Land rose 0.85 percent to 23.60 pesos but Alliance Global Group fell 0.13 percent to 14.94 pesos.

— Wellington finished 0.47 percent, or 18.35 points, higher at 3,889.60.

Fletcher Building added 2.5 percent to NZ$7.34 and Nuplex surged 5.5 percent to NZ$3.09, while Air New Zealand was up 0.4 percent at NZ$1.22.

— Jakarta eased 0.13 percent, or 5.33 points, to 4,251.51.

Palm oil company London Sumatra fell 6.2 percent to 2,275 rupiah, while its rival Sampoerna Agro lost 7.1 percent to 2,600 rupiah. Bucking the trend was cement maker Gresik, which was up 3.2 percent at 14,650 rupiah.

— Kuala Lumpur closed flat, nudging down 1.28 points to 1,649.75.

Sime Darby shed 3.4 percent to 9.41 ringgit, while AirAsia fell 1.6 percent to 3.02. Tenaga Nasional gained 1.5 percent to 6.95 ringgit.

— Bangkok gained 0.14 percent, or 1.89 points, to 1,307.55.

Power firm Electricity Generating PCL gained 1.55 percent to 131 baht, while oil company PTT lost 0.61 percent to 325 baht.

— Mumbai rose 0.24 percent, or 45.78 points, to 18,869.69.

Hindustan Unilever rose 2.37 percent to 555.5 rupees while Tata Global Beverages added 6.57 percent to 154.9 rupees.

India’s cash-strapped Kingfisher Airlines fell 4.89 percent to 14.16 rupees.