U.S. Markets close in 3 hrs 44 mins

EU opens anti-trust probe into aluminium firm Novelis' plans to buy Aleris

BRUSSELS, March 25 (Reuters) - EU anti-trust regulators said on Monday they had opened an investigation into U.S. aluminium firm Novelis Inc's plans to buy processor Aleris Corps.

"Our in-depth investigation aims to ensure that the acquisition of Aleris by Novelis does not have a negative impact on effective competition in aluminium markets and does not lead to less choice and higher prices for European industrial customers," Europe's antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager said in a statement.

Novelis, a U.S. unit of India's Hindalco Industries Ltd , said in July it had agreed to buy Aleris for $2.6 billion, giving it a foothold in supplying the aerospace industry and other value-added businesses globally. (Reporting by Alissa de Carbonnel; Editing by Mark Potter)