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Europe: Stocks extend rebound on Greece, deals after weekly jump


[LONDON] European stocks extended their highest level since May on growing optimism over a resolution to Greece's crisis and deals activity.

Dutch fertilizer maker OCI NV rallied 11 per cent after CF Industries Holdings Inc. said it's in preliminary talks about a combination with certain businesses of OCI. Aveva Group Plc jumped 16 per cent after Schneider Electric SE agreed to combine its software business with the UK company.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index advanced 0.2 per cent to 406.44 at 8.09 am in London. That's the ninth day of gains, the longest streak since April 2014.

The benchmark gauge climbed 4.3 per cent last week, the most since January, as Greece and its creditors reached an agreement paving the way for a new bailout and the European Central Bank increased emergency liquidity assistance to the country.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel held out the prospect of limited debt relief for Greece, where banks are reopening after three weeks. The nation's deadline to repay the European Central Bank 4.2 billion euros (S$6.25 billion) is Monday. The Athens Stock Exchange will remain shut.

The opening of Euro Stoxx 50 Index futures was delayed earlier due to technical issues, Eurex said in a notice on its website.

Royal KPN NV fell 1.2 per cent after Altice SA said it has no interest in America Movil SAB's 21.1 per cent stake in the Dutch phone company.