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  • Merck 3Q profit up 2 pct despite sales decline Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 7:29 AM ET

    The company also narrowed its 2012 profit forecast to a range of $2.08 to $2.24 per share, from $2.04 to $2.30. Merck, based in Whitehouse Station, N.J., said net income was $1.73 billion, or 56 cents per share. Excluding acquisition, integration and restructuring charges totaling $1.2 billion, net income was $2.93 billion, or 95 cents per share.

  • SINGAPORE, Oct 26- Gold dropped more than half a percent in volatile trade on Friday, heading for its third week of decline after shares fell in Asia and the U.S. dollar firmed, while persistent fears about the health of the global economy also dragged. Gold hit a high for the day at $1,714.65 an ounce before slipping to $1,702.96 by 0618 GMT, down $8.23.

  • INSIGHT-At Nestle, interacting with the online enemy Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 6:00 AM ET

    VEVEY, Switzerland, Oct 26- It looks like mission control: in a Swiss market town, an array of screens in Nestle's headquarters tracks online sentiment. Other companies, such as PepsiCo, Danone and Unilever, have exploited the opportunities to promote themselves online.

  • MOSCOW, Oct 25- The Kremlin on Thursday dismissed talk that Russian President Vladimir Putin has a back problem that prompted him to postpone foreign visits and might require surgery. Putin, who began a six-year presidential term in May and turned 60 on Oct. 7, was seen to be limping at an Asia-Pacific summit in the Pacific port of Vladivostok in early September.

  • REFILE-Kremlin dismisses talk Putin has back trouble Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 5:35 AM ET

    MOSCOW, Oct 25- The Kremlin on Thursday dismissed talk that Russian President Vladimir Putin has a back problem that prompted him to postpone foreign visits and might require surgery. Putin, who began a six-year presidential term in May and turned 60 on Oct. 7, was seen to be limping at an Asia-Pacific summit in the Pacific port of Vladivostok in early September.

  • India's ICICI Bank quarterly profit up 30 percent Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 3:33 AM ET

    MUMBAI, India-- ICICI Bank reported a better-than-expected 30 percent rise in quarterly profit Friday on strong interest income and demand for retail loans, as India's largest private lender managed to improve loan quality despite rising corporate defaults.

  • *Gold seen trading in $1,700- $1,740 range next week. SINGAPORE, Oct 26- Gold was a tad higher on Friday but heading for its third week of decline after shares inched lower in Asia, the U.S. dollar firmed, and fears about the health of the global economy lingered.

  • US economy likely grew slowly last quarter Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 12:02 AM ET

    WASHINGTON-- The government's snapshot Friday of the U.S. economy's growth will be its last before Americans choose a president in 11 days. And it would give Mitt Romney's team evidence to argue that the economy is growing at an unacceptably subpar pace. "We are stuck in this half-speed growth mode," said David Wyss, an economics professor at Brown University.

  • *Saudi Arabia, U.S., Iraq and Libya pump more; consumption wanes. *Iran exports may have seen small bounce since July plunge.

  • 3 Asian Sectors to Watch     Thursday, 25 Oct 2012 | 8:55 PM ET

    Aadil Ebrahim, Managing Director, Bowen Asia says that he likes high quality Japanese exporters, Chinese domestic consumption stocks and local Indian plays.

  • Kremlin dismisses talk Putin has back trouble Thursday, 25 Oct 2012 | 8:40 PM ET

    MOSCOW, Oct 25- The Kremlin on Thursday dismissed talk that Russian President Vladimir Putin has a back problem that prompted him to postpone foreign visits and might require surgery. Putin, who began a six-year presidential term in May and turned 60 on Oct. 7, was seen to be limping at an Asia-Pacific summit in the Pacific port of Vladivostok in early September.

  • Oct 25- Shares of online streaming music service Pandora Media closed down 12 percent on a report that Apple Inc was in serious talks with major music labels to start an advertising-supported internet radio service by early next year.

  • *Adjusted loss 5 cents/ share vs Street view loss 7 cents. Oct 25- Fashion company Fifth& Pacific Cos Inc on Thursday said sales at its struggling Juicy Couture brand are improving so far this quarter and gave an encouraging holiday sales forecast for all three of its major brands, sending its shares up 11.4 percent.

  • Oct 25- Potash Corp of Saskatchewan's third-quarter earnings fell 22 percent as a standoff over new contracts led to a sharp drop in shipments to China and India, the world's two biggest consumers of the company's namesake crop nutrient. China accounted for just 12 percent of sales and India 5 percent.

  • *Eyes on next week's Bank of Japan policy meeting. NEW YORK, Oct 25- Gold rose above $1,700 an ounce on Thursday, a day after it fell under that, in reaction to encouraging United Kingdom GDP growth data and expectations the Bank of Japan will further loosen its monetary policy.

  • Aeon to buy Carrefour's Malaysian business - Nikkei Thursday, 25 Oct 2012 | 5:57 PM ET

    Oct 26- Japanese retailer Aeon Co is set to acquire France- based Carrefour SA's Malaysian business for slightly more than 20 billion yen as part of its push into Southeast Asia, the Nikkei said. Carrefour made the announcement two years after it unsuccessfully tried to sell its operations in Singapore and Malaysia.

  • Oct 25- Potash Corp of Saskatchewan's third-quarter earnings fell 22 percent as a standoff over new contracts led to a sharp drop in shipments to China and India, the world's two biggest consumers of the company's namesake crop nutrient. China accounted for just 12 percent of sales and India 5 percent.

  • Weak business spending drags on US growth Thursday, 25 Oct 2012 | 3:24 PM ET

    WASHINGTON-- Companies are holding off on purchases of computers, industrial equipment and other long-lasting manufactured goods, a trend that's slowing the U.S. economy. A fourth straight month of lackluster corporate spending led many economists on Thursday to trim their forecasts for growth in the July-September quarter.

  • *Raises 2012 EPS outlook to $2.50- $2.60 per share. Oct 25- Rising generic drug sales in North America helped push up Mylan Inc's quarterly profit by 35 percent and the drugmaker raised its earnings forecast for 2012, even as it steps up spending on its own drug research.

  • Potash Corp. 3rd-quarter net income falls 22 pct Thursday, 25 Oct 2012 | 11:52 AM ET

    Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan Inc. said Thursday that its net income fell 22 percent on a drop in overseas sales. The Canadian fertilizer maker earned $645 million, or 74 cents per share, down from $826 million, or 94 cents per share, in the same quarter last year.