Asia and Europe Close Higher

European stock markets closed higher on Monday. In London, the Financial Times-Stock Exchange 100 gained 18.90 points, or 0.41%, to close at 4,583.40. UK shares recovered nicely and closed higher following an easing in oil prices and strong sales figures from media giant WPP (+2.96%), which reported 5.7% higher third-quarter revenues, the highest growth rate since first-quarter 2001. BP fell 1.30%, after it reported third-quarter earnings of $4.338 billion, excluding one-off and non-operating items, but reaction in the market was negative. Insurance stocks, including L&G and Royal & Sun Alliance recovered after New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer said he would not press criminal charges against US firm Marsh & McLennan.

Germany's DAX gained 7.85 points, or 0.20%, to close at 3,862.26. Financials and cyclicals recovered from Monday's plunge. Munich Re bounced 1.78% after Marsh news. Allianz rose 1.49%, after it said its fund management business is expected to contribute about 20% of the group's profits next year as it expands in Asia.

In France, the CAC-40 gained 10.42 points, or 0.29%, to close at 3619.48, topping off a lackluster performance with a mildly higher close.

Asian markets ended higher. Japan's Nikkei index gained 13.31 points, or 0.12%, to close at 10,672.46, on the back of a rebound in banking and insurance stocks. But the index's climb was limited by losses in exporters, which were hit by the strength in the yen. Canon shed 0.98% while Honda Motor lost 1.18%.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng gained 34.25 points, or 0.27%, to close at 12,852.35.

Canada's benchmark S&P/TSX fell 69.02 points, or 0.79%, to close at 8,818.18.

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