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Europe Stocks Finish Higher

European stock markets finished higher on Tuesday after the U.S. core CPI data came in line with expectations (+0.2%), alleviating fears of an aggressive move by the Federal Reserve to rein in inflation, reports Standard & Poor's MarketScope.

London's Financial Times-Stock Exchange 100 index was up 25.4 points, or 0.57%, at 4,458.6, on news that Britain's CPI rose at a 1.5% annual rate, while house price increases eased for the first time in six months. The Bank of England's Mervyn King is worried about the risk of a sharp correction in consumer spending if there is a sharp downturn in the housing market, reports Standard & Poor's MarketScope. British Airways was higher on lower oil prices.

In Paris, the CAC 40 added 36.33 points, or 1%, to 3,683.43. Germany's DAX index gained 38.65 points, or 0.98%, to 3,987.3. In auto news, DaimlerChrysler and Volkswagen were trading lower after reporting declines in European new car registrations. BMW was lower despite higher registrations.

Asian stock markets ended lower. Japan's Nikkei 225 index shed 103.96 points, or 0.9%, to 11,387.7, with traders catching New York's Monday Fed interest rate fears. Carmakers bucked the downtrend on optimism about increasing sales in the U.S., reports Standard & Poor's MarketScope.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index moved 25.88 points lower, or 0.21%, to finish at 12,050.69, on concerns about rising interest rates.

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