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    * Exporters, brokerages jump on strong first quarter results. * Panasonic tanks after missing expectations. By Ayai Tomisawa. Japan's Nikkei share average rose briskly on Thursday morning to break a four-day losing streak after the U.S. Federal Reserve said the U.S. economy continued to strengthen, while strong blue-chip companies buoyed risk appetite.

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    Those hoping for some action in the Chinese currency markets are going to have to wait, now that the stock market is going haywire again. Beijing can hardly afford a bout of currency weakness on top of everything else that is going on. That hasn't stopped some currency traders from betting renewed volatility in the yuan is coming.

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    * Canadian dollar at C$1.2944 or 77.26 U.S. cents * Bond prices mixed across the maturity curve By Solarina Ho TORONTO, July 29 - The Canadian dollar ended the session slightly weaker against its U.S. counterpart on Wednesday after the U.S. Federal Reserve stayed vague on the timing of its anticipated interest rate hike.

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    Canada's main stock index closed sharply higher on Wednesday, helped by gains in banks, railways and oil companies as crude prices bounced off near six-month lows and the U.S. Federal Reserve left the door open for a September interest rate hike.

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    SAO PAULO, July 29 (Reuters) - Brazil's currency, the real, rose on Wednesday after five sessions of losses as a recovery in Chinese stocks supported appetite for emerging markets in general, while shares of phone company Telefonica Brasil boosted the Brazilian bourse. The real strengthened 1.1 percent, leading gains among Latin American currencies, as China managed to stabilize its stock market, providing some relief to emerging markets in general. Analysts warned that Latin American currencies remain vulnerable to more volatility in the near term as the U.S. Federal Reserve readies to raise interest rates, reducing liquidity in the region. "The currencies of Brazil and Colombia, the two countries with the largest current account deficits, will probably continue to bear the brunt of any selloffs," analysts at Capital Economics said in a research note. The Brazilian real had lost about 6 percent since last Tuesday, also weighed upon by fears that Brazil is bound to lose its investment-grade rating. It hit a 12-year low of 3.43 per dollar on Tuesday after Standard & Poor's threatened to downgrade the country to junk. The Colombian peso gained 0.3 percent after slumping nearly 12 percent since June 10. In equities markets, Brazil's benchmark Bovespa index led gains in Latin America, with a 1 percent jump. Shares of Telefonica Brasil SA rose as much as 6 percent, their biggest intraday jump in nine months, after the company reported strong operating profit supported by the acquisition of broadband provider GVT. Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1625 GMT: Stock indexes daily % YTD % change change Latest MSCI Emerging Markets 899.89 0.97 -6.8 MSCI LatAm 2294.98 1.92 -17.45 Brazil Bovespa 50108.50 1.02 0.20 Mexico IPC 44444.27 0.5 3.01 Chile IPSA 3795.77 0.34 -1.43 Chile IGPA 18518.37 0.32 -1.87 Argentina MerVal 11226.03 2.61 30.85 Colombia IGBC 9947.69 0.64 -14.50 Venezuela IBC 15482.21 -0.36 301.22 Currencies daily % YTD % change change Latest Brazil real 3.3321 1.09 -20.25 Mexico peso 16.201 0.45 -8.99 Chile peso 665.6 0.06 -8.89 Colombia peso 2851.5 0.33 -16.25 Peru sol 3.184 0.00 -6.44 Argentina peso (interbank) 9.1800 -0.03 -6.86 Argentina peso (parallel) 14.93 0.27 -6.23 (Reporting by Walter Brandimarte; Editing by Peter Galloway)

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    By Carla Mozee and Victor Reklaitis, MarketWatch. Mortgage lending climbs in June. U.K. stocks climbed Wednesday, notching a second day of gains, with Barclays PLC and British American Tobacco PLC moving higher after reporting a rise in profit.

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    * FTSEurofirst up 1 pct, Euro STOXX 50 up 0.6 pct. * Wolters Kluwer, Peugeot top gainers after results. * Italcementi jumps after bid from HeidelbergCement. * Schneider Electric, Saipem fall after cutting forecasts. * Fed to issue policy statement at 1800 GMT. By Sudip Kar-Gupta.

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    By Carla Mozee and Victor Reklaitis, MarketWatch. Upbeat earnings from PSA Peugeot Citroën, other firms help. European stocks closed higher Wednesday, helped by upbeat earnings from companies like PSA Peugeot Citroën, with investors also waiting to hear what the U.S.

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    * TSX up 112.86 points, or 0.8 percent, to 14,190.22. * Eight of the TSX's 10 main groups were up. By Solarina Ho. Canada's main stock index rose on Wednesday, after briefly turning negative, as financial and energy stocks helped guide the market higher and markets cheered forecast-beating crude inventory data out of the United States.

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    * Greece's two-year borrowing costs more than halved. * Some banks seeing an opportunity for their clients. * Others remain cautious over whether deal will hold. By John Geddie. It is barely two weeks since Greece was on the brink of crashing out of the euro, yet some investment banks are now encouraging investors to return to its bond market.

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    * Corporate earnings lift U.S., European stocks. * Dollar gains slightly. By Herbert Lash. Global equity markets rose on Wednesday, lifted by strong U.S. and European corporate earnings, although moves were subdued before a policy statement from the U.S. Federal Reserve, which is expected to raise interest rates, perhaps as early as September.

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    Greece's stock market will not reopen on Thursday and may not open on Friday either due to technical issues at local banks, a spokeswoman for the Athens Stock Exchange said on Wednesday. "The stock market will not open tomorrow and it is unlikely to open on Friday.

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    China's economy is "resilient" and should be able to withstand sharp moves in the country's stock market, said Christine Lagarde, the managing director of the International Monetary Fund, on Wednesday. "We are still forecasting China at 6.8%" for 2015, Lagarde said during a press conference. "It certainly is a bit lower than what it delivered lately, but it is a measured slowdown, I think very much under control."

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    On Wednesday, managing director of the International Monetary Fund Christine Lagarde said China and Europe aren't risks to the global economic outlook. During a "virtual" news conference with journalists from all over the world, Lagarde was generally upbeat, despite describing the global economy as "fragile" and "unbalanced" with risks to the downside. Lagarde said she wasn't worried about the Chinese economy despite the recent stock market selloff.

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    Canada's main stock index was marginally firmer shortly after the open on Wednesday, but moves were extremely limited ahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve's interest rate statement due later this afternoon.

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    * Canadian dollar at C$1.2945 or 77.25 U.S. cents * Bond prices mixed across the maturity curve TORONTO, July 29 - The Canadian dollar weakened slightly against the U.S. dollar on Wednesday as crude prices fell, but traded within a narrow range ahead of the Federal Reserve statement on monetary policy.