Sydney, Dec 23, 2009 (ABN Newswire) - US stocks ended higher overnight on a bigger-than-expected rise in existing home sales for November. The used-home sales jumped 7.4 per cent, having increased more than double the economists' expectations.
The US data also boosted the European market, which hit a 14-month closing peak on Tuesday. The U.S. dollar extended its gains, hitting a two-month high against the yen.
Asian markets finished mostly higher Tuesday. Japanese exporters were helped by the stronger US dollar against yen and pushed the Tokyo stocks to a 3-month closing high. But Shanghai market was 2.3 per cent lower as metals shares fell on recent losses in gold prices.
The European Commission has approved Canon Inc.'s (TYO:7751) planned acquisition of major Dutch printer maker Oce NV (PINK:OCENF) with 730 million euros. The commission said that the deal will "not significantly impede effective competition" in the EU market as Canon and Oce would continue to face several strong competitors in all market sectors.
Toyota Motor Corp. (TYO:7203) and Volkswagen Group Japan KK said Tuesday they have agreed to end a contract of marketing the German partner's Volkswagen vehicles in Japan. Toyota will stop distributing the German partner's vehicles to its domestic dealers by the end of 2010. Volkswagen will market its products directly through these dealers. Toyota said the cancelling of the contract, signed in 1991, wasn't related to Volkswagen AG's (ETR:VOW) recent decision to partner Suzuki Motor Corp. (TYO:7269).
China Citic Bank Corp. (HKG:0998) said Wednesday it has approved Spanish Bank Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria SA's (NYSE:BBVA) plan to raise the H-share stake it owns in the lender to 15%.BBVA holds 10 per cent interest in Citic Bank and also has an option, which came due Dec. 3, for an additional 5% stake at a 10% premium to Citic Bank's initial public offering price of HK$5.86.
South Korea's Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (SEO:042660), the world's No.2 shipbuilder, said it has won a US$650 million order for 10 crude oil carriers from Greece's Almi Tankers. The company is to deliver the 10 Suezmax oil carriers to Almi Tankers between the end of 2011 and November 30, 2012.
Guangzhou R&F Properties Co. (HKG:2777), Country Garden Holdings Co. (HKG:2007) and Agile Property Holdings Ltd. (HKG:3383) jointly won a bid for the Guangzhou Asian Games Town site in a government land auction. The three property firms won the bid for CNY25.5 billion, making it the most expensive site in mainland China. The winning bid was 55% higher than the reserve price of CNY16.50 billion.