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Signal-to-leakage-and-noise ratio (SLNR) is a promising criterion for linear precoder design in multi-user (MU) multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) systems. It decouples the precoder design problem and makes closed-form solution available. In this letter, we present a new linear precoding scheme by slightly relaxing the SLNR maximization for MU-MIMO systems with multiple data streams per user. The precoding matrices are obtained by a general form of simultaneous diagonalization of two Hermitian matrices. The new scheme reduces the gap between the per-stream effective channel gains, an inherent limitation in the original SLNR precoding scheme. Simulation results demonstrate that the proposed precoding achieves considerable gains in error performance over the original one for multi-stream transmission while maintaining almost the same achievable sum-rate.