*Sulzer gains on mergers& acquisitions news. However UK shares slightly underperformed as the voting got underway in Scotland's referendum on independence, keeping investors on edge ahead of the result on Friday. Britain's FTSE was up 0.4 percent, Germany's DAX index gained 1 percent and France's CAC 40 rose 0.6 percent.» Read More
SINGAPORE, Aug 1- Brent crude held near $106 a barrel on Friday as ample supply continued to drag on prices a day after the benchmark posted its worst monthly performance since April 2013. U.S. crude futures for September delivery fell 13 cents to $98.04 a barrel, following a 6.8 percent decline last month, the biggest monthly loss since May 2012.
*Shanghai index rises 7 pct in eight days, highest since Dec 2013. *Hong Kong- Shanghai stock connector scheme should boost liquidity.
*Corn, soy, wheat all post monthly losses. "The beans firmed up due to some speculators taking advantage of the weakness earlier in light of the very strong demand we are seeing," said Terry Reilly, an analyst at Futures International in Chicago. Chicago Board of Trade soybeans for August delivery settled up 4 cents at $12.24-1/ 2 a bushel.
*Shares in Adidas and Banco Espirito Santo slump. LONDON, July 31- European shares fell sharply on Thursday, with the euro zone's blue-chip index slipping to a three-month low, on concerns of an earlier than expected interest rate hike in the Uniteed States and a debt default by Argentina.
*Wall St tumbles with Dow, S&P turning negative for July. NEW YORK, July 31- Doubts on whether stock markets can ride out a tightening of U.S. monetary policy dominated trade on Thursday, sending major U.S. stock indexes down more than 1 percent, while the dollar edged higher against a basket of major currencies.
*Adidas, Banco Espirito Santo shares slump. LONDON, July 31- Europe's FTSEurofirst 300 share index hit a three-week low on Thursday, led lower by Adidas after the group warned about business in Russia.
*Investors fret over Argentina default fallout. NEW YORK, July 31- U.S. stocks slumped in a broad decline on Thursday, with the Dow and S&P 500 turning negative for July on concerns over the strength of overseas economies and ongoing tensions with Russia.
*Investors fret over Argentina default fallout. NEW YORK, July 31- U.S. stock index futures pointed to a sharply lower Wall Street open Thursday, with the Dow and S&P 500 likely to turn negative for the month on concerns over the strength of overseas economies and ongoing tensions with Russia.
July 31- MasterCard Inc, the world's second-largest debit and credit card company, posted a better-than-expected 10 percent rise in quarterly profit, as more customers used its cards to make purchases. MasterCard shares were up 2.8 percent at $78 in trading before the bell on Thursday.
*Adidas, Banco Espirito Santo shares slump. LONDON/ PARIS, July 31- Europe's FTSEurofirst 300 index of top shares slipped to a two-week low on Thursday, led lower by Adidas after the group warned about business in Russia, while Argentina's default also rattled investors.
PARIS, July 31- European shares fell in early trade on Thursday, led by Adidas after the group warned about business in Russia, while Argentina's default also rattled investors. Spanish stocks also underperformed, with Madrid's IBEX dropping 1.5 percent, as traders cited worries over Spanish companies' exposure to Latin America after Argentina's debt default.
TOKYO, July 31- The dollar stayed strong and U.S. bond yields held firm on Thursday after data showed solid U.S. economic growth, even as the Federal Reserve repeated its message that it is in no hurry to raise interest rates. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was almost flat in early trade.
Weight Watchers International reported better-than-expected second-quarter revenue. Shares rose sharply.
LONDON, July 30- European shares closed lower on Wednesday, little moved by strong U.S. growth data, after weak earnings reports from cement-makers and concerns about a possible escalation of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
MOSCOW, July 30- Shares in Russia's second-largest bank VTB slid over 3 percent at the start of trading on Wednesday, but the broader stock market rose as investors had priced in the impact of a new wave of Western sanctions.
MOSCOW, July 30- Shares in Russia's second-largest bank VTB, targeted by the latest sanctions from the United States, opened down 3 percent on Wednesday, while the broad stock market and the rouble were stable.
*Merck up as results beat expectations, but Pfizer slips. United Parcel Service shares fell 3.7 percent to $98.86 after the world's biggest courier company slashed its earnings forecast for the year due to spending to boost capacity. Rival shipping company FedEx Corp was down 1.6 percent at $147.14.
*Russia mkts steadier after three days of selling, nerves remain. *China& Hong Kong shares buoyed by economic& stimulus hopes. LONDON, July 29- World shares hovered just below all-time highs on Tuesday as investors drew encouragement from a rally in Chinese markets and beaten-down Russian stocks enjoyed some relief after three days of heavy selling.
*China& Hong Kong shares buoyed by economic& stimulus hopes. "The recent rally of Hong Kong and China stock markets is pretty much liquidity-driven due to favorable fund flow. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan added 0.33 percent to be just a whisker from a peak last touched in April 2011.
SYDNEY, July 29- Asian shares touched fresh three-year highs on Tuesday as investors in the region drew encouragement from a rally in Chinese markets, though caution was widespread given the torrent of U.S. economic news still to come this week.