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European Markets Rise as U.K. Jobless Rate Falls to Lowest Level Since Late 2008


European stocks rose after the U.K. jobless rate fell to its lowest level in five and a half years and as China’s economic growth increased for the first time in three quarters. Asian stocks were mixed. In Milan, Gtech SpA rose after the Italian gaming company announced an agreement to buy Las Vegas-based International Game Technology Inc. for $6.4 billion in cash, stock and assumed debt. In Lisbon, Banco Espirito Santo SA soared on reassuring comments from the head of Portugal’s central bank that shareholders are willing to participate in a capital increase, after a second affiliate reportedly missed a debt payment. Among decliners was Royal Mail plc after revealing its GLS subsidiary was the subject of a French antitrust probe.