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    The euro remained on track for its biggest quarterly fall and European shares for their best first quarter of the euro era on Tuesday as worries about Greece's finances kept the single currency under pressure.

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    * MSCI Asia-Pacific index up 0.4 percent. * China announces steps Monday to prop up sliding house prices. * Greek debt talks weigh on euro. * Crude sags as Iran's nuclear talks deadline looms. By Shinichi Saoshiro. Asian stocks rose on Tuesday after a rally on Wall Street and steps by China to shore up its economy boosted risk appetite, while Greek debt worries again haunted the sagging euro.

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    Australian stocks started solidly higher Tuesday, with the S&P/ASX 200 up 1.3%, catching up with global stock gains after falling 1.3% a day earlier despite gains for the rest of the region. While further weakness in iron- ore prices had helped lead Sydney lower Monday, yet another drop for the commodity on Tuesday was offset by a rally overnight on Wall Street and signs of fresh stimulus in China, Australia's top trading partner. Dow Jones Newswires also cited traders as saying they...

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    Activist investors have never had it so good in Japan. Under Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, the government has pushed companies to improve governance and boost shareholder returns. A new law requires at least one independent director on corporate boards, hardly tough stuff, but a significant improvement.

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    By Victor Reklaitis, MarketWatch, Hiroyuki Kachi. NEW YORK-- The dollar gained ground against the yen and the euro on Monday, with analysts saying the advance was amplified by thinner trading in a holiday-shortened week. The dollar was at Yen120.06, compared with Yen119.11 late Friday in New York.

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    NEW YORK-- Treasury yields closed slightly higher on Monday after wavering in light volumes amid a rally in U.S. stocks, mixed economic reports and signs that the People's Bank of China Governor Zhou Xiaochuan is ready to launch additional monetary easing. The yield on the benchmark 10- year Treasury note gained 1.3 basis point to 1.959%, after dropping as low as 1.942%, according to Tradeweb. The two-year note yield increased 0.4 basis points to 0.587%.

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    * TSX ends up 95.97 points, or 0.65 percent, at 14,908.39. * Nine of 10 main index sectors advance. * Catamaran rises almost 25 percent on takeover deal. By John Tilak. Canada's main stock index rose on Monday, buoyed by modest advances in the financial and energy sectors and a sharp increase in Catamaran Corp's (CTRX) price after UnitedHealth Group Inc (UNH) agreed to buy the pharmacy-benefits manager.

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    * Canadian dollar at C$1.2693 or 78.78 U.S. cents * Bond prices mostly higher across the maturity curve By Solarina Ho TORONTO, March 30 - The Canadian dollar extended losses against a rebounding greenback on Monday, as oil prices fell and as investors looked ahead to domestic data later this week.

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    * China shares hit seven-year high on ambitious Silk Road project. * Deals on both sides of Atlantic lift European, U.S. stocks. * Dollar broadly higher as Fed seen raising rates this year. * Oil slips as traders await Iran nuclear talks. By Herbert Lash.

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    Stocks recaptured positive territory thanks to a trifecta of good news on the penultimate day of first-quarter trading. A deluge of big pharma M&A deals, residual goodwill from Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen's speech on Friday and signs China might introduce further monetary easing helped power broader markets higher.

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    Canada's main stock index ended higher on Monday, helped by an almost 25 percent surge in pharmacy benefits company Catamaran Corp (CTRX) after it received a $12.8 billion takeover offer. The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index unofficially ended up 95.97 points, or 0.65 percent, at 14,908.39. All but one of the index's ten main sectors ended higher.

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    Shares of Target Corp. (TGT)  closed higher by 0.71% to $82.14 on Monday afternoon, following reports that the retail giant is speeding up its timetable for its planned Canada exit one month ahead of schedule. A court appointed monitor that is overseeing the closure of the Target Canada stores says all 133 locations will be completely shut down "as early as mid-April," the Financial Post reports.

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    * Encouraging data mitigate worries about Greece debt talks. * Euro sets for biggest quarterly loss vs dollar since 1992. * Dollar index rebounds after two weeks of losses. * Yellen's message supports view of U.S. gradual tightening. By Richard Leong.

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    Bank of America Merrill Lynch has hired Marcus Hiseman from Morgan Stanley (MS) as head of corporate debt capital markets for Europe, Middle East and Africa, according to an internal memo seen by Reuters on Monday. Hiseman, who is set to join the bank in London in June, will also head the corporate fixed-income solutions business at the Wall Street bank.

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     . With a strengthening dollar posing headwinds for corporate earnings, and a possible Federal Reserve rate hike looming, big market swings will continue to dominate the stock markets, according to one strategist. "I think volatility is going to be a feature of investing in the stock market this year," said Steve Freedman, senior investment strategist at UBS.

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    Alcoa (AA) shares are up 0.87% to $12.81 in trading on Monday after the company announced plans to close the remaining 74,000 metric tons of capacity at its Sao Luis smelter in Brazil as increasing costs and falling metals prices continue to hurt the company's bottom line.The company said that it expects to take a first quarter restructuring related charge of between $10 million and $15 million, or ...

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    RIO DE JANEIRO, March 30 (Reuters) - Latin American currencies traded mostly weaker on Monday, tracking global dollar strength, while banking shares supported local stock markets. The dollar rallied after comments last Friday from U.S. Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen underscored the view that U.S. interest rates are likely to rise gradually later this year. The Brazilian real sank as low as 3.288 to the dollar though it continued to see technical support at the 3.29 level for a second week. The currency is down more than 12 percent in March on concerns over weak economic growth and political wrangling over a fiscal adjustment seen as critical to ward off a sovereign credit downgrade. The concerns were fed over the weekend on reports that Finance Minister Joaquim Levy mildly criticized President Dilma Rousseff's economic management in a closed seminar with former students from his alma mater. "We're following the markets abroad today, but we also have some domestic noise, principally on the Levy question," said Silvio Campos Neto, an economist with consulting firm Tendencias in Sao Paulo. Other currencies in the region weakened as well, with Chile's peso posting its biggest intraday loss in over a week after the central bank raised its outlook for year-end inflation on Monday. In equities markets, Brazil's Bovespa stock index gained for the first session in three, boosted by shares of lender Itau Unibanco Holding SA. Global macro funds have taken an interest in Brazilian banks on the perception that Levy will be able to push through fiscal measures, according to a report from UBS Securities analysts on Monday. Some investors also see the real's weakness as overdone and view valuations as favorable, given "positive earnings momentum," the report said. Shares of electric utility Companhia Energética de São Paulo SA soared their most in over a year after the company announced late Friday that it would distribute 1.58 billion reais ($486.2 million) in dividends. Shares of planemaker Embraer SA rose 4 percent after it announced an order from Air France-KLM Group on Monday. Financial shares also helped support Mexico's IPC stock index and Chile's IPSA index, both of which gained for the second straight session. ($1 = 3.25 Brazilian reais) Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1606 GMT: Stock indexes daily % YTD % Latest change change MSCI Emerging Markets 968.24 1.06 0.19 MSCI LatAm 2423.77 0.78 -11.83 Brazil Bovespa 50967.95 1.74 1.92 Mexico IPC 43942.82 0.7 1.85 Chile IPSA 3897.99 0.35 1.22 Chile IGPA 19015.42 0.31 0.77 Argentina MerVal 10977.819 2.94 27.96 Colombia IGBC 9945.82 0.38 -14.52 Peru IGRA 12344.66 -0.25 -16.56 Venezuela IBC 4816.05 -5.48 24.81 Currencies daily % YTD % change change Latest Brazil real 3.2540 -0.48 -18.33 Mexico peso 15.2443 -0.03 -3.28 Chile peso 626.5 -0.56 -3.21 Colombia peso 2576.99 -0.74 -7.33 Peru sol 3.096 -0.10 -3.78 Argentina peso 8.8125 -0.03 -2.98 (interbank) Argentina peso 12.65 1.03 10.67 (parallel) (Reporting by Asher Levine and Flavia Bohone; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

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    Kingfisher rises 2% after collapsed Mr. LONDON-- The U.K.' s benchmark stock index snapped a four-session losing streak on Monday, with shares of Kingfisher PLC (KGFHF) among the best performers after a collapsed takeover deal. The FTSE 100 index gained 0.5% to 6,891.43, recovering after closing at the lowest level in 10 days on Friday.