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European stocks near record highs on recovery hopes; Credit Suisse slumps

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March 29 (Reuters) - European stocks edged closer to a record high on Monday on optimism over a global economic recovery, while Credit Suisse tumbled following a warning of “significant” losses from exiting positions after a U.S.-based hedge fund defaulted on margin calls.

The Swiss bank fell 9.5% as it said the unnamed hedge fund defaulted on margin calls made last week by Credit Suisse and other banks and said that while it was “premature to quantify” the resulting loss, “it could be highly significant and material to our first quarter results”.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.3%, tracking gains in Asia as investors grew confident about a strong global economic rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic, led by the United States.

The benchmark STOXX 600 has lagged its U.S. counterpart in the past six months as new lockdowns in the continent and a slower-than-expected vaccination programme dented the economic outlook for Europe.

The export-heavy German DAX rose 0.6% to an all-time high as data over the weekend showed annual profits at China’s industrial firms surged in the first two months of 2021, highlighting a rebound in the country’s manufacturing sector.

Hugo Boss slipped 0.7% after German fashion house got caught in a concerted boycott by Chinese celebrities and consumers over Western accusations of forced labour in Xinjiang. (Reporting by Devik Jain in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)

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