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  • Shares mostly higher in quiet holiday trading Friday, 26 Dec 2014 | 12:40 AM ET

    TOKYO— Shares were mostly higher in quiet trading Friday in Asia, as most markets in the region and across the globe were closed for Christmas holidays. KEEPING SCORE: Japan's Nikkei 225 stock index edged 0.1 percent higher to 17,818.50 and South Korea's Kospi gained 0.1 percent to 1,948.41. JAPAN DATA: Shares recovered lost ground on expectations of further...

  • Japan's McDonald's to put big fries back on menu Friday, 26 Dec 2014 | 12:14 AM ET

    TOKYO— Big fries are going back on the menu in Japan. McDonald's Japan said Friday it will resume serving all portion sizes of fries on Jan. 5 after resolving shortages due to labor disruptions on the U.S. West Coast. It apologized and said it would try to avoid further shortfalls at its 3,100 outlets in Japan.

  • *Japan inflation slows, highlights BOJ's struggles. Market participants expected it would still take a bit of time for business to resume in full swing, with key markets in the region such Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore closed on Friday. There is no change to our view that the yen will continue to weaken as the recovery in U.S. economic fundamentals, which is at...

  • Sony says online PlayStation disrupted Thursday, 25 Dec 2014 | 10:58 PM ET

    TOKYO— Sony's online PlayStation store and Microsoft's Xbox site suffered disruptions to users on Christmas Day in the latest possible cyber-attacks on the companies. A notice on Microsoft's Xbox website said it knew some users were having trouble signing in. it said, "We're aware of this issue, and we're working to find a fix ASAP!" That followed a cyberattack on...

  • By Leika Kihara and Tetsushi Kajimoto. TOKYO, Dec 26- Japanese annual core consumer inflation slowed for a fourth straight month in November due largely to sliding oil prices, highlighting the challenges the central bank faces in achieving its 2 percent inflation target. "While the economy is recovering, falling oil prices and slowing inflation will force the...

  • Shares mostly higher in quiet holiday trading Thursday, 25 Dec 2014 | 10:19 PM ET

    Japan's benchmark edged lower after the government reported lackluster inflation, industrial production and household spending for November. KEEPING SCORE: Japan's Nikkei 225 stock index slipped 0.2 percent to 17,779.18 and Singapore's Straits Times index edged 0.1 percent lower to 3,342.20. JAPAN DATA: Japan's inflation rate eased slightly in...

  • *Japan inflation slows, highlights BOJ's struggles. Market participants expected it would still take a bit of time for business to resume in full swing, with key markets in the region such Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore closed on Friday. There is no change to our view that the yen will continue to weaken as the recovery in U.S. economic fundamentals, which is at...

  • Japan inflation, industrial output weaken in Nov Thursday, 25 Dec 2014 | 7:37 PM ET

    TOKYO— Japan says its inflation rate eased slightly in November as household spending dropped, hindering the government's effort to get the world's third-largest economy out of recession and back to sustainable growth. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is due to release soon a 3.5 trillion yen proposed stimulus plan that reportedly will focus on providing more...

  • TOKYO/ LOS ANGELES, Dec 25- Sony Corp's Tokyo headquarters is changing its usual arm's-length relationship with its U.S. studio following a massive cyberattack and the controversy over the comedy "The Interview," with the group CEO being consulted on key decisions, company officials said. Officials with direct knowledge of the relationship said Sony Pictures...

  • Citigroup to sell Japan retail bank unit to SMBC Thursday, 25 Dec 2014 | 2:33 AM ET

    TOKYO— Citigroup has agreed to sell its retail banking business in Japan to Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp., the companies said Thursday. "This decision furthers Citi's global strategy of focusing our resources where we feel we have a competitive advantage," Citibank CEO Peter B. Eliot said in a statement. Citigroup said it also is considering selling its credit...

  • *Many markets around the region closed, as well as Europe, U.S. But many foreign investors were taking time off, and markets were closed in other key countries around the region, including Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong and South Korea. They will also be closed in Europe and North America.

  • TOKYO, Dec 25- Fuji Heavy Industries, the maker of Subaru brand cars and SUVs, has scrapped a plan to shift production of the new XV Crosstrek to its U.S. plant and will instead make the SUV in Japan, a source familiar with the company's production plans said. Fuji Heavy, which has a policy of making cars in markets where they are sold, decided to make the new vehicle in...

  • TOKYO, Dec 25- Fuji Heavy Industries, the maker of Subaru brand cars and SUVs, has scrapped a plan to shift production of the new XV Crosstrek to its U.S. plant in Indiana and will instead make the crossover SUV in Japan, a source familiar with the company's production plans said. Fuji Heavy, which has been moving production to Indiana due to the strong yen and a policy of...

  • TOKYO, Dec 25- Bank of Japan board members made a rare call on the government to steadily promote measures to restore the country's tattered finances three weeks after expanding monetary stimulus, minutes of their November meeting showed. The November rate review was held in the midst of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's announcement to postpone a scheduled second...

  • *Many markets closed around the region, as well as London, U.S. Markets are closed in other key countries around the region, including Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong and South Korea, and will be closed later in London and New York. There were some guys taking profits in the dollar-yen this week, but most people seem happy to be caught long, "said Kaneo Ogino, director at...

  • The film was available for rental on Google Inc's YouTube site as of early Wednesday afternoon. Microsoft Corp and Sony itself are also showing the comedy, a day before the hastily scheduled premiere at some 320 independent theaters. He added that Sony had first reached out to Google, Microsoft "and other partners" on Dec. 17, the day the studio said it had no future...

  • Microsoft Corp and Sony itself are also showing the comedy, a day before its scheduled premiere at some 320 independent theaters. He added that Sony had first reached out to Google, Microsoft "and other partners" on Dec. 17, the day the studio said it was canceling the movie's Christmas Day release. The showing is a chance for Google and Microsoft, which have been bit...

  • ( (Adds comment from Google and White House). Microsoft Corp and Sony itself are also showing the comedy, the studio said, a day after agreeing to release it at some 200 independent theaters. The showing is a chance for Google and Microsoft, which have been bit players in a VOD market dominated by Apple Inc, Amazon.com Inc and cable and satellite operators, to raise their...

  • *Rouble dips after S&P threatens Russia with junk status. *Brent oil drops back to $60 a barrel. Most Asian markets had edged up overnight and Europe was looking to close the Christmas week up 1 percent despite a subdued day on Wednesday.

  • FOREX-Dollar down from highest levels in nearly 9 years Wednesday, 24 Dec 2014 | 9:42 AM ET

    NEW YORK, Dec 24- Investors trimmed dollar positions during the Christmas holiday lull on Wednesday, pulling the greenback down from its highest point in nearly nine years after strong U.S. economic growth data on Tuesday solidified views of coming Fed rate increases. The dollar index reached a high not seen since March 2006, while the two-year yield on U.S.