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Optimism in Europe as stocks rise on last day of '13

LONDON/HONG KONG--European stocks rose Tuesday before the New Year break, capping a year of bumper gains on the back of growing economic optimism and easier monetary policy from top central banks.

In late morning deals, London's FTSE 100 index advanced 0.36 percent to 6,755.79 points and the Paris CAC 40 won 0.25 percent to 4,286.60, on the final trading day for both bourses before shutting for New Year's Day.

“In today's shortened session, the FTSE is moving higher as traders prepare to pop the champagne corks,” said analyst David Madden at trading firm IG.

“Not only will they be celebrating in honor of New Year's Eve, but also because 2013 has been a stellar year for the stock market.”

Frankfurt's DAX 30 was closed on Tuesday, one day after falling 0.39 percent to finish the year at 9,552.16 points.

Over the course of 2013, however, Frankfurt stocks soared by a staggering 25.5 percent, striking a series of record peaks. The British and French markets are on course for annual gains of about 15 percent in value.

Stocks have been boosted this year by the upbeat global economic outlook, low interest rates and central bank stimulus policies.

In addition, sentiment was bolstered after the Fed decided earlier this month to scale back its stimulus, sparking hopes that the U.S. economy was back on track.

Across in Asia on Tuesday, equities mostly rose on the last day of 2013, after another record-breaking session on Wall Street.

Dealers also drew strength from the Dow's record close overnight on Wall Street, with the market jumping 0.16 percent to register its fourth all-time high in the past five sessions and the 51st of the year.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.16 percent to close at a record 16,504.29 points on Monday.

The Dow has risen about four percent since the Fed announced on Dec. 18 that it plans to scale back its stimulus in January, boosting hopes over the health of the world's biggest economy.

In Asia, markets mostly rose Tuesday on the last day of the year following another record close on Wall Street, but Shanghai was set to be the region's worst performer over the past 12 months.

While the Dow ended at another all-time high, disappointing U.S. home sales figures sent the dollar lower after it touched a five-year high against the yen.

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