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Allstate, BofA agree to end toxic mortgage lawsuit

By Bernard Vaughan NEW YORK (Reuters) - Allstate Corp and Bank of America Corp's Countrywide unit have agreed to dismiss a lawsuit stemming from $700 million of toxic mortgage debt, according to a court filing on Tuesday. The parties "have agreed to dismissal of this action in its entirety," lawyers for Allstate and Countrywide said in a document filed in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. The parties also waived any right to appeal, according to the document.

Nasdaq snaps losing streak, leads market higher

The tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index rallied Tuesday, leading the market to its first day of gains after three straight losses. The Nasdaq jumped 33.23 (0.81 percent) to 4,112.99. The Dow Jones industrial Average advanced 10.40 (0.06 percent) to 16,256.27, while the broad-based S&P 500 rose 6.95 (0.38 percent) to 1,851.99. Analysts said it was too soon to say if Tuesday's rally meant the tech sector had stabilized. Nasdaq has been in retreat since early March due to concerns Facebook, Tesla Motors and other high-flying stocks are overvalued.

Amazon.com, Nike, Humana, Nokia and Mylan are big market movers

NEW YORK, N.Y. - Stocks that moved substantially or traded heavily Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq Stock Market: NYSE Nokia Corp., up 36 cents to $7.58 China approved the sale of the communication company's mobile phone unit to Microsoft, removing one of the last major hurdles for the $7.3 billion deal. Humana Inc., down 73 cents to $111.27 Medicare Advantage coverage providers slipped after the federal government issued a final rate announcement that some see as another funding cut. Nike Inc., up $2.09 to $72.92

Canadian housing starts, permits drop as market cools

By Andrea Hopkins TORONTO (Reuters) - Canadian housing starts fell more than expected in March and building permits dropped sharply in February, according to data released on Tuesday that suggests the country's robust housing market is cooling. Volatility in the housing data and an especially hard winter may explain some of the unexpected weakness in the data, economists said. But the figures still bolstered expectations that home building was starting to slow after a boom that observers have warned is unsustainable.

Japan drugmaker Takeda to fight $6 billion damages awarded by U.S. jury

By Daniel Levine and Edmund Klamann SAN FRANCISCO/TOKYO (Reuters) - Takeda Pharmaceutical Co Ltd said it would contest $6 billion in punitive damages imposed by a jury in the United States in a case that accused Japan's largest drugmaker of concealing cancer risks associated with its Actos diabetes drug. Eli Lilly and Co, Takeda's co-defendant in the case, was ordered to pay $3 billion in punitive damages by the jury in Louisiana on Monday. It also awarded $1.475 million in compensatory damages.

Walmart beefs up wholesale business in India

US retail giant Wal-Mart Stores plans to add 50 new wholesale stores in India as it seeks growth in a key market where it has been unable to launch retail stores. Walmart said it will open the new "cash and carry" stores over the next four to five years, adding to its 20 existing stores. It also plans to extend its e-commerce platform to members of the existing stores, which operate under the name Best Price Modern Wholesale. "Walmart is committed to India and we are excited about our growth plans," said Scott Price, chief executive of Walmart Asia.

Wal-Mart to open 50 more wholesale outlets in India after splitting from Indian partner

NEW YORK, N.Y. - Wal-Mart Stores Inc. says it will open 50 more wholesale stores in India over the next four to five years, adding to the current total of 20 in the country. These stores, known as cash-and-carry outlets, cater to retailers, rather than to individuals. Wal-Mart also said Tuesday it plans to launch an online operation for cash-and-carry customers in India.

Japan drugmaker Takeda to fight $6 billion damages imposed by U.S. jury

By Daniel Levine and Edmund Klamann SAN FRANCISCO/TOKYO (Reuters) - Takeda Pharmaceutical Co Ltd said it would contest $6 billion in punitive damages imposed by a U.S. federal jury in a case alleging that Japan's largest drugmaker had concealed cancer risks associated with its Actos diabetes drug. Eli Lilly and Co, Takeda's co-defendant in the case, was ordered to pay $3 billion in punitive damages.

Household loans resume upward trend in February

SEOUL, April 8 (Yonhap) -- Household loans extended by South Korean financial institutions increased 3 trillion won (US$2.8 billion) in February from a month earlier as mortgage and credit loans rose, the central bank said Tuesday. Outstanding household lending by local banks and non-banking institutions totaled 688.1 trillion won as of end-February, compared with 685.1 trillion won a month earlier, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK).

Citi agrees to pay $1.1 bn in mortgage settlement

Citigroup Monday said it reached an agreement with a group of 18 institutional investors to pay $1.125 billion to settle claims on some mortgage-backed securities sold ahead of the financial crisis. Citi said the agreement releases it from an obligation to repurchase mortgages sold into 68 mortgage trusts. The 68 trusts issued $59.4 billion in residential mortgage securities during 2005-2008.
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