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European stocks climbed as a report showed that U.S. consumer confidence beat economists’ forecasts, even after durable-goods orders in the world’s largest economy unexpectedly slumped.
The ECB will allocate cash from its long-term refinancing operation tomorrow. It will probably provide 470 billion euros ($632 billion) of three-year cash.
Germany’s Chancellor, Angela Merkel, won a parliamentary vote on Greek aid after the close of European trading yesterday. She warned lawmakers that pushing Greece out of the euro risked “incalculable” damage.
Greece’s credit ratings were cut to “selective default” by Standard & Poor’s after the Mediterranean nation negotiated the biggest sovereign-debt restructuring in history. S&P lowered Greece’s rating from CC, two levels above default, after the government added clauses to its debt designed to include investors unwilling to take part in the exchange, the New York- based company said in a statement yesterday.
National benchmark indexes climbed in 12 of the 18 western- European markets. Germany’s DAX Index added 0.6 percent, while the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index rose 0.2 percent. France’s CAC 40 Index gained 0.4 percent. Greece’s ASE Index was the worst performing index, falling 3 percent.
KBC rallied 4.7 percent to 17.42 euros after Santander agreed to buy a unit of Belgium’s biggest bank and insurer by market value.
Belvedere SA, a French vodka maker, climbed 3.8 percent to 68.70 euros after Les Echos reported that the company plans to sell its Sobieski brand to cut debt.
Eiffage SA jumped 4.8 percent to 30.10 euros after the French builder’s rating was raised to “neutral” from “underperform” at Bank of America Corp.
TomTom plunged 15 percent to 3.75 euros after forecasting that revenue and earnings per share will fall this year. Europe’s biggest maker of portable navigation devices said sales will decline to 1.1 billion euros in 2012 from 1.27 billion euros in 2011 and adjusted earnings per share will decrease to about 35 cents per share from 55 cents.
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