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French Stocks Rise: Air France, Lafarge, Societe Generale Lead the Gains

France’s CAC 40 Index rose 57.34, or 1.7 percent, to 3,388.63 in Paris as of 9:24 a.m. in . The SBF 120 Index climbed 1.7 percent to 2,510.49.

The following were among the most active stocks on French equity markets today.

Accor SA (AC FP) advanced 1.1 percent to 37.34 euros. Europe’s largest hotelier said bondholders approved a plan to spin off its services division into a separate company.

Air France-KLM Group (AF FP) rose 2.1 percent to 9.04, recouping some of yesterday’s 4.2 percent slump. The airliner plans to restart talks with Airbus SAS and Boeing Co. on an order for between 100 and 150 long-haul planes, French daily La Tribune reported, citing an unidentified manager at Air France- KLM. The order may be worth as much as $38 billion at catalogue prices, the newspaper reported.

Air France plans to restart the talks in the fourth quarter of this year and may place the order in 2011, or sooner, the newspaper cited the executive as saying.

Atari SA (ATA FP) surged 14 percent to 3.88 euros. The video-game maker reported second-half net income of 3.8 million euros, compared with a loss of 171.3 million euros a year earlier.

Fimalac SA (FIM FP) gained 1.4 percent to 33.53 euros. The financial services company that owns Fitch Ratings had first- quarter net income of 17.6 million euros, up from 0.8 million euros a year earlier.

Lafarge SA (LG FP) advanced 2.7 percent to 44.34 euros. The world’s biggest cement maker agreed to set up a new company that will combine its central European cement business with that of Strabag SE. The new company, Lafarge Cement CE Holding GmbH, will be 70 percent owned by Paris-based Lafarge and will cut the parent’s debt by 77.5 million euros.

Societe Generale (GLE FP) climbed 2 percent to 33.67 euros. Frederic Oudea, chief executive officer of France’s second- largest bank by market value, told investors that 2010 will be a “rebound” year and confirmed a forecast for losses of between 700 million euros and 1 billion euros from toxic assets.

To contact the reporter on this story: Adam Haigh in London at

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