Stocks in Europe, Asia Gain


Stocks in Europe and Asia climbed as investors speculated the Obama administration’s plan to rid banks of toxic assets will spur growth and Mark Mobius said a new bull market has begun.

Deutsche Bank AG, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. and Citigroup Inc. rose more than 4 percent as the U.S. Treasury announced its plan aimed at financing as much as $1 trillion in purchases of distressed assets. Petro-Canada jumped 16 percent in Germany after agreeing to be bought by Suncor Energy Inc. to create the biggest Canadian energy company.

The MSCI World Index climbed for the ninth time in 10 days, increasing 1.2 percent at 12:09 p.m. in London. The gauge of 23 developed nations has added 16 percent since March 9 as Citigroup, Bank of America Corp. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. said they made money in the first two months of 2009 and the Federal Reserve said it would buy $300 billion of government bonds to combat the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.

The MSCI Emerging Markets Index of 23 developing nations gained 3.5 percent, erasing its 2009 drop. Mobius said emerging markets are in better shape” than developed economies.

Europe’s Dow Jones Stoxx 600 Index gained 1.6 percent. Barclays Plc climbed on speculation Hellman & Friedman LLC will bid for its iShares unit along with a group of private equity firms. The regional gauge has rebounded 11 percent from a 12- year low March 9, trimming its 2009 retreat to 12 percent.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index posted its biggest rally this year, adding 3.7 percent.

Japanese stocks soared on speculation demand from China will boost earnings for commodities producers and Japan’s government will enact new stimulus measures to avert a deepening recession.

The Nikkei 225 Stock Average rose 269.57, or 3.4 percent, to close at 8,215.53, the highest since Jan. 29. The broader Topix index added 26.79, or 3.5 percent, to 791.56, a sixth- straight gain, the longest since a seven-day rally ended Jan. 7.


TradingEconomics.com, Bloomberg
3/23/2009 5:30:49 AM