NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Asian stocks ended with gains Tuesday and European stocks were higher as eurozone officials meet in Brussels to discuss resolving the region's two-year debt crisis.

The finance ministers from the 17 eurozone countries were set Tuesday to fix details of leveraging the European Financial Stability Fund so it can help Italy or Spain should they need aid, according to Reuters.

The meeting comes as President Barack Obama ratchets up the pressure on European leaders to fix their debt problems.

"We've got a stake in their success, and we will continue to work in a constructive way to try to resolve this issue in the near future," Obama said at the White House Monday after meeting with European Union President Herman Van Rompuy and European Commission President José Barroso.

Stock futures in the U.S. suggested Wall Street would open higher Tuesday, a day after stock posted solid gains. The Dow Jones Industrial Average on Monday jumped 2.6%.

The Nikkei index in Japan rose 2.3% to close Tuesday at 8,477.82. South Korea's Kospi gained 2.3% and Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 1.2%.


The ratings agencies have been busy.

On Monday, Fitch affirmed its 'AAA' rating on United States' long-term debt but revised its outlook to "negative" because of declining confidence in the sustainability of government finances.

The change follows the failure of the Congressional Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction -- the "super committee" -- to agree on a $1.2 trillion deficit reduction plan earlier this month, and puts the federal government's triple-A rating under increasing risk.

Moody's on Tuesday warned it could downgrade the subordinated debt of 87 banks across 15 countries -- including the biggest lenders in France, Italy and Spain -- on concerns that governments would be too cash-strapped to bail them out.

And Standard & Poor's could change its outlook on France's triple-A credit rating to negative within the next 10 days, Reuters reported, citing French newspaper La Tribune .


Thomas H. Lee Partners is interested in buying the U.S. operations of Yahoo! ( YHOO), sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.

THL is hoping to do a leveraged buyout of Yahoo!'s U.S. business, which could be worth $5 billion to $6 billion, and draw on its experience running other media assets, the sources said.

THL's approach is different than other private-equity firms such as Silver Lake, KKR and TPG, which are expected to put in bids for a stake of up to 20% in the company, Reuters noted.


AT&T ( T - Get Report) has been working secretly on an 11th-hour deal to salvage its $39 billion merger with T-Mobile USA, The New York Times reported.

AT&T is in talks with Leap Wireless ( LEAP) to sell it a big piece of T-Mobile's customer accounts and some of its wireless spectrum, the Times reported, citing people involved in the negotiations.

AT&T hopes the deal would placate the Justice Department enough for it to drop its opposition to AT&T's acquisition of T-Mobile, the people said.


Facebook may file for a $10 billion initial public offering by year-end, aiming to go public in the April-June time frame, The Wall Street Journal reported.


Tiffany ( TIF - Get Report), the jewelry retailer, is expected by analysts Tuesday to report earnings of 61 cents a share on revenue of $802.1 million.


Tuesday's economic calendar features the Case-Shiller 20-city home price index for September. It will be released at 9 a.m. EST, with the consensus expecting a decline of 3%.

The reading on consumer confidence for November is scheduled to be released at 10 a.m.


-- Written by Joseph Woelfel

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