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  • *Copper's fall compounds concerns over China slowdown. NEW YORK, March 12- U.S. crude oil fell by more than 2 percent on Wednesday, its biggest drop in two months, after the United States announced unexpected plans for a "test" release of strategic oil reserves while weekly data showed a big rise in crude stockpiles.

  • STAVANGER/ LONDON, March 12- Norway could increase gas supplies to Europe to make up for the amount lost if Russia cuts off flows through Ukraine, but it could provide that help only for a day or two.

  • Russia's Sberbank postpones forum due to Ukraine Wednesday, 12 Mar 2014 | 1:07 PM ET

    MOSCOW, March 12- Russia's largest bank Sberbank has postponed a business conference until the autumn due to uncertainty about Ukraine and the country's economy, the bank said on Wednesday.

  • Putin wants 'seat at table' in Ukraine policy: Pro     Wednesday, 12 Mar 2014 | 12:45 PM ET

    David Hauner, head of EEMEA fixed income and economics at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, says Russian president Vladimir Putin's move into the Crimea is "defensive" and he is interested in maintaining influence in Ukraine.

  • Ukraine PM 'abandoned his post'     Wednesday, 12 Mar 2014 | 12:40 PM ET

    Sweden's foreign minister, Carl Bildt, discusses the West-versus-Russia confrontation ongoing in Ukraine's Crimea region.

  • US STOCKS-Wall St pares losses as Ukraine concerns ease Wednesday, 12 Mar 2014 | 12:26 PM ET

    NEW YORK, March 12- U.S. stocks were little changed on Wednesday, as equities recouped much of their earlier declines amid signs of progress in diplomatic attempts to ease tensions surrounding Ukraine.

  • 'Serene' megayacht finds safe harbor from Putin Wednesday, 12 Mar 2014 | 11:43 AM ET
    M/V Serene 440-foot yacht owned by Yuri Scheffler, the founder of Stolichnaya Vodka.

    Vodka magnate Yuri Scheffler, visiting in New York, says he feels sorry for Ukraine. "There is only one law in Russia, and it's called 'Putin.'"

  • UPDATE 2-Russia's Vimpelcom investigated over Uzbekistan Wednesday, 12 Mar 2014 | 11:20 AM ET

    MOSCOW, March 12- Russian mobile phone operator Vimpelcom has become the latest company to come under scrutiny over its operations in Uzbekistan, an authoritarian country where rival MTS had its assets confiscated.

  • MOSCOW, March 12- President Vladimir Putin's engagement in Ukraine threatens to divert Russia's central bank from its goals of inflation-targeting and freeing up the rouble currency, undermining the credibility it has built up.

  • US STOCKS-Wall St declines on China, Ukraine concerns Wednesday, 12 Mar 2014 | 10:40 AM ET

    *EPL Oil to be acquired by Energy XXI for $2.3 bln. NEW YORK, March 12- U.S. stocks declined on Wednesday, putting the S&P 500 on track for a third straight decline after its most recent record high, as concerns grew over the strength of China's economy. London copper, seen as a proxy for China's economic health, fell for a fourth day to its lowest level since July 2010.

  • BRUSSELS, March 12- European Union member states have agreed the wording of sanctions on Russia, including travel restrictions and asset freezes against those responsible for violating the sovereignty of Ukraine, according to a draft document reviewed by Reuters.

  • AMMAN, March 12- Turmoil in Ukraine is driving Middle Eastern grain buyers to shy away from striking new deals there and to consider rival suppliers, a shift that is likely to push up import bills.

  • US STOCKS-Wall St to open lower as China concerns mount Wednesday, 12 Mar 2014 | 8:53 AM ET

    *EPL Oil to be acquired by Energy XXI for $2.3 bln. NEW YORK, March 12- U.S. stocks were poised to fall at the open, putting the S&P 500 on track for a third straight decline, as concerns grew over the strength of China's economy.

  • G-7: Will not recognize Crimea referendum Wednesday, 12 Mar 2014 | 8:39 AM ET
    Russian armored personnel carriers reported to be heading to Simferopol of Crimea, Ukraine.

    The leaders of the G-7 nations said Wednesday they will not recognize the results of a coming referendum on Crimea's status.

  • Crimea vote looms as Obama meets with Ukraine PM Wednesday, 12 Mar 2014 | 8:23 AM ET
    Arseniy Yatsenyuk in Berlin, February 17, 2014

    Ukraine prime minister will visit the White House as President Obama searches for a way to head off the crisis in Ukraine.

  • US STOCKS-Futures fall as China concerns mount Wednesday, 12 Mar 2014 | 7:39 AM ET

    *EPL Oil to be acquired by Energy XXI for $2.3 bln. NEW YORK, March 12- U.S. stock index futures fell on Wednesday, putting the S&P 500 on track for a third day of declines, as concerns grew over the strength of China's economy.

  • *Asian shares lose ground on economic worries, Ukraine. *Ukraine appeals to West as Crimea turns to Russia. U.S. crude lost $1.43 to trade at $98.60 by 0930 GMT on industry data that showed crude stocks in top oil burner the United States rose more than forecast, signalling a slowdown in demand as the weather improved.

  • LONDON, March 12- Emerging stocks hit a one-month low on Wednesday after fears about China's economy dragged down copper and other commodities, while worries about western sanctions on Russia weighed on the rouble, forcing the central bank to intervene. Concerns also lingered about China's credit sector following its first domestic bond default last week.

  • LONDON, March 12- Emerging stocks hit a one-month low on Wednesday after fears about China's economy dragged down copper and other commodities, while worries about western sanctions on Russia weighed on the rouble, forcing the central bank to intervene. Concerns also lingered about China's credit sector following its first domestic bond default last week.

  • *Asian stocks lose ground on economic worries, Ukraine. *Ukraine appeals to West as Crimea turns to Russia. SINGAPORE, March 12- Brent futures fell towards $108 a barrel on Wednesday as concerns about weak demand growth in the world's two biggest oil consumers overshadowed fears of supply disruption amid worsening geopolitical tensions over Ukraine.