Australian shares closed lower on Monday as an Omicron-led surge in COVID-19 infections pushed the country's tally past one million cases, with a drop in local technology stocks ahead of a U.S. inflation report weighing further on markets.

The S&Pended 0.1% lower at 7,447.1, giving up some of Friday's 1.3% gain.

Total infections in Australia continued to surge, with over half a million cases reported over the last week, straining the country's healthcare infrastructure and supply chains.

Technology stocks fell nearly 1%, tracking a drop on the tech-focused Nasdaq .IXIC on Friday. Worries of sooner-than-expected policy tightening by the Federal Reserve have increased after a recent U.S. jobs missed expectations, with inflation data in focus to gauge the central bank's trajectory.

Sector heavyweight Afterpay  retreated 2.3%, while other tech firms Xero  and Wisetech Global  fell 2.8% and 2.7%, respectively.

Bucking the trend, energy stocks  added 1.1% and rose for a second consecutive session, as oil prices remained in an upward momentum, with political instability in Kazakhstan leading to concerns over oil supply.

Woodside Petroleum rose 2.3%, followed by Santos  , up 0.7%.

Meanwhile, the former chief executive of fibre cement maker James Hardie  , who was fired for breaching the company's code of conduct, said he was considering legal action against the firm. Its shares ended 1.3% lower.

In New Zealand, the S&P fell 0.6% in its third session of losses to 12,892.94, hurt by an 3.5% drop in media firm SKY Network Television Ltd  to a near four-week low.

(Reporting by Harshita Swaminathan; editing by Uttaresh.V)