Europe Higher, Asia Lower

European stock markets were higher on Tuesday, with two of the indexes reaching record highs

European stock markets were higher on Tuesday. In London, The Financial Times-Stock Exchange 100 gained 53.90 points, or 1.11%, to close at 4906.20, a new two and a half year high, as bid rumours again swirled over Exel while mining stocks fell into favour after Citigroup raised target prices this morning. Wall Street was slightly higher near the noon hour as the FOMC's two-day interest rate meeting begins. At home, Exel again rose 8.9% as last week's speculation resurfaced that U.S. rival UPS would make a bid for the logistics company. Mining stocks also led the FTSE higher following an optimistic note from Citigroup this morning: XStrata (+4.16%), BHP Billiton (+3.42%), Rio Tinto (+3.21%), Anglo American (+3.81%) all up. Telco Cable & Wireless rose 2.64% on talk chairman Richard Lapthorne will renew his contract when it expires next year. Virgin Mobile said it gained 417,000 net additions in the third quarter to Dec. 31 but ARPU fell to 132 million pounds from 137 million pounds quarter-over-quarter.

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