Asian stocks climbed, with the regional benchmark index posting its biggest gain in three weeks, after European leaders meeting in Brussels agreed to ease repayment rules to Spanish banks and make it easier to recapitalize the region’s troubled lenders.
Westpac Banking Corp. (WBC) rose 1.4 percent in Sydney as banks provided the biggest support to the Asian benchmark after leaders of the 17 euro countries dropped a requirement that governments get preferred creditor status on crisis loans to Spain’s banks. Toyota Motor Corp. (7203) advanced 2.4 percent, leading gains among Japanese exporters. BHP Billiton Ltd. (BHP), the world’s largest mining company, climbed 2.6 percent as metals prices soared.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index (MXAP) climbed 1.8 percent to 117.03 as of 1:41 p.m. in Tokyo. The gauge fell 12 percent through yesterday from a February high amid concern growth in China and the U.S. is slowing as the euro-zone debt crisis escalates.
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