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Asian stocks rose, with the regional index rebounding from its biggest drop in six months, after Premier Wen Jiabao said China will focus more on bolstering economic growth.
Nikkei 225 8,633.89 +22.58 +0.26%
S&P/ASX 200 4,073.6 +27.14 +0.67%
Shanghai Composite 2,348.3 +3.78 +0.16%
China Overseas Land & Investment Ltd., a developer controlled by the nation’s construction ministry, rose 1.5 percent in Hong Kong.
BHP Billiton Ltd. climbed 2 percent in Sydney after RBC Capital Markets said the world’s largest mining company may start a new share buyback.
Nintendo Co., a manufacturer of game consoles that gets a third of its sales in Europe, fell 1.2 percent in Tokyo. OCI Co., a petro and coal chemicals maker, slumped 4.4 percent in Seoul after delaying expansion plans because of Europe’s debt crisis.
European stocks climbed, rebounding from last week’s biggest selloff since September, as China’s pledge to boost growth outweighed concern that Greece may be forced to leave the euro area.
In China, Premier Wen Jiabao called for “putting stabilizing growth in a more important position” and refrained from mentioning concern about inflation in remarks published yesterday by the official Xinhua News Agency. China may announce stimulus actions in the near term, according to a front-page commentary today in the China Securities Journal, published by Xinhua.
German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble will, for the first time, discuss the euro at a meeting with his newly installed French counterpart, Pierre Moscovici, in Berlin today as European Union leaders prepare to meet in Brussels on May 23.
Group of Eight leaders on May 19 urged Greece to stay within the euro area as polls in the country showed a close race between parties supporting and opposing austerity measures linked to the EU-led bailout.
National benchmark indexes climbed in 12 of the 18 western European markets. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 gained 0.7 percent and Germany’s DAX increased 1 percent, while France’s CAC 40 rose 0.6 percent. Italy’s FTSE MIB lost 0.3 percent as 29 of the gauge’s companies traded without the right to their latest dividends.
Carmakers were among the biggest gainers of the 19 industry groups on the Stoxx 600, rebounding from a five-day selloff. Renault rallied 4.7 percent to 32.02 euros as UBS AG added the French carmaker to its European “key calls” list.
Fiat climbed 8.6 percent to 3.64 euros in Milan, the biggest gain in more than two months. Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. upgraded the carmaker to outperform, the equivalent of a buy recommendation, from market perform with a price estimate of 5 euros. That’s 51 percent above last week’s close.
Barclays rose 2.2 percent to 180 pence after the lender said it plans to sell its entire holding in BlackRock before the latest round of Basel rules stops it from counting the holding as capital.
Banco Popolare SC surged 19 percent to 1.04 euro cents, the biggest jump since at least July 2007, as analysts from Bank of America Corp. to Exane BNP Paribas upgraded the shares after Italy’s fourth-biggest bank said regulatory approval to use internal risk models boosted its Tier 1 capital.
Man Group Plc gained 4.7 percent to 78.8 pence, recouping some of last week’s 14 percent slump. The world’s largest publicly traded hedge fund has agreed to buy FRM Holdings Ltd., adding $8 billion of assets invested in other hedge fund managers as its own stock price sinks.
U.S. stocks rose, giving the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index its biggest rally in more than two months, after China signaled it would support growth while German and French officials said they will work to keep Greece in the euro.
Stocks rebounded from a four-month low as Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao pledged to focus more on bolstering growth. Germany and France agree that they will do “everything necessary” to ensure Greece remains in Europe’s single currency, Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said after a meeting with French Finance Minister Pierre Moscovici.
Cooper Industries jumped 25 percent, the most in almost 11 years, to $69.88. Each Cooper share will be exchanged for $39.15 in cash and 0.77479 Eaton share. That offer is valued at $72 a share based on Eaton’s May 18 closing price, 29 percent more than Cooper’s price that day.
Yahoo! Inc. advanced 1 percent to $15.58. Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., China’s largest e-commerce provider, agreed to repurchase about a 20 percent stake in itself from the U.S. Web portal for about $7.1 billion.
Facebook tumbled 11 percent to $34.03. It rose 0.6 percent in its first day of trading on May 18.
A gauge of diversified financial shares in the S&P 500 retreated. David Trone, an analyst at JMP Securities LLC, downgraded some banks including JPMorgan and Bank of America. He said risk/reward is “highly unattractive.” JPMorgan (JPM) fell 2.9 percent to $32.51. Bank of America (ВАС) slumped 2.7 percent to $6.83.
Lowe’s Cos. slumped 10 percent, the most since 2009, to $25.60. The second-largest U.S. home-improvement retailer reduced its forecast for full-year earnings to a range of $1.73 to $1.83 from $1.75 to $1.85 because of a smaller increase in profit margins than it had previously expected.
Campbell Soup Co. fell 2 percent to $32.75 after posting a decline in third-quarter profit as the company works to revive its struggling soup business.
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