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Asian stocks rose, with the regional benchmark index snapping a three-day losing streak, after Japan’s economy shrank less than the government initially estimated, U.S. employers increasing hiring and more investors joined a Greek debt swap.
Toyota Motor Corp., Asia’s biggest carmaker by market value, rose 2.6%.
Esprit Holdings Ltd., a clothier that counts Europe as its biggest market, added 4.5% in Hong Kong.
Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc., Japan’s top lender, advanced 2.7% after U.S. banks gained on a report the Federal Reserve is considering a new type of bond-purchase program.
LG Innotek Co. paced gains among suppliers to Apple Inc., which yesterday introduced a new iPad.
European stocks rallied as the deadline on Greece’s debt swap approached and Germany’s industrial output increased more than forecast.
In Germany, industrial output increased more than economists forecast in January as construction activity jumped. Production rose 1.6% from December, when it fell 2.6%, the Economy Ministry in Berlin said today. Economists forecast a January increase of 1.1 percent.
EADS surged 11%, the highest price since May 2006. The maker of Airbus passenger jets agreed to pay a dividend of 45 cents a share, more than exceeding analyst. Earnings before interest, taxes and one-time items will increase to more than 2.5 billion euros in 2012, from 1.8 billion euros last year, EADS said.
Scania AB and Volvo AB rose 6.9% and 4.7%, respectively, after JPMorgan Chase & Co. named the Swedish truckmakers among its top picks.
Deutsche Post AG advanced 5.7%. Europe’s largest postal service said profit in 2012 will rise as much as 6.6 percent.
U.S. stocks rose as concern about Europe’s debt crisis eased after a majority of investors signaled participation in Greece’s swap.
Stocks gained as Greek Prime Minister Lucas Papademos told his Cabinet ministers that Greece had made “an appropriate framework with significant incentives” for bondholders. The government got about 85 percent of bondholders to tender their holdings of the country’s debt for new securities, a banking official said.
All major sectors staged gains, but Materials and Industrials put on the most impressive performances. They scored gains of 1.6% and 1.4%, respectively.
McDonald's (MCD, -3.22%) was unable to take part in the Consumer Discretionary sector's climb due to disappointment over the company's latest monthly comparable store sales report. Comparable sales in the US grew by 11.1%, but global growth grew at a less rapid clip of 7.5%.
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