Tokyo and Sydney retreated while Shanghai Hong Kong and Seoul gained.
Overnight, Wall Street's benchmark S&P 500 index lost 0.5%. Banks energy companies and others that depend on consumer spending also retreated.
Investor optimism has been boosted by higher corporate profits, U.S. hiring and consumer confidence. Still, traders are uneasy about a rise in inflation and interest rates and renewed coronavirus infections that prompted some governments to reimpose anti-disease controls.
“Asian markets have experienced short-term volatility as investors balance the impact of higher interest rates with increasing optimism that pent-up demand will boost earnings," Janet Tsang of JP Morgan Asset Management said in a report.
The Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.4% to 3,491.35 while the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo tumbled 2.1% to 29,052.11. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong opened lower but was up 0.2% at 29,173.25 at midday.
The Kospi in Seoul rose 0.5% to 3,214.99 while the S&P-ASX 200 in Sydney sank 0.7% to 7,019.20.
India's Sensex opened up 0.5% at 48,208.06. New Zealand, Singapore and Jakarta declined while Bangkok advanced.
On Wall Street, the S&P 500 fell Monday to 4,163.26. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.4% to 34,077.63. Both hit highs on Friday.
Chipmaker Intel fell 1.7%, Capital One lost 0.9% and Valero Energy slid 2.3%.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite slid 1% to 13,914.77.
Tesla dropped 3.4% after two people were killed in Texas in a crash of one of its models. Authorities say there was no one in the driver’s seat at the time of the crash. It’s unclear whether the car’s driver-assist system was being used.
This week, 81 of the 500 members of the index are due to report earnings, as are 10 of the 30 members of the Dow, including Johnson & Johnson, Verizon Communications and Intel.
On average, analysts expect quarterly profits across the S&P 500 to be up 24% from a year earlier, according to FactSet.
In energy markets, benchmark U.S. crude rose 62 cents to $64.05 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to price international oils, gained 69 cents to $67.74 per barrel in London.
The dollar advanced to 108.20 Japanese yen from Monday's 108.11 yen. The euro gained to $1.2063 from $1.2039.