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European Stocks to Watch: Next, ST Microelectronics, Air Berlin, Adidas and Swiss Life

By CNBC.com

Here are some of Tuesday’s big movers on European stock markets:

Next (up 3.46%) Britain’s second largest retailer rose on speculation that an investment bank had joined forces with a private equity group to work on a buyout of the clothing retailer at about 2,500 pence per share.

ST Microelectronics (up 1.89%) The company announced it will approve a cash dividend of $0.30 a share at its annual meeting, which will be held in Amsterdam on April 26, 2007.

Air Berlin(up 2.47%) The airline announced it will buy loss-making charter carrier LTU for 140 million euros ($185.8 million).

Adidas (up 4.99%)  BNP started coverage of the German sporting goods maker with “outperform” rating and a price target of 49 euros ($64). Additionally, U.K. investor and sports retail group owner Michael Ashley increased his voting stake in Adidas to 3.14% and there was speculation that he wants to raise his stake to 10% in the German company.

Swiss Life (down 1.93%) The company reported earnings that topped expectations, but investors decided to take some profits on the stock, which had climbed ahead of the report.