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  • Oct 25- ConocoPhillips and Occidental Petroleum Corp reported quarterly results that topped Wall Street estimates as they produced more oil and gas than expected, even as lower prices hurt profits. Conoco had record output in the Eagle Ford basin in south Texas, while Occidental saw strong production of higher-priced crude oil in the Permian Basin.

  • GRAINS-Decline on tepid export sales; demand concerns Thursday, 25 Oct 2012 | 3:23 PM ET

    Wheat was down 0.5 percent, erasing earlier gains due to a lack of buying interest following Wednesday's nearly 2 percent price rally in response to news Ukraine would ban wheat exports from Nov. 15.

  • Chief Financial Officer Clay Williams characterized it as North America playing defense, while the rest of the world played offense. He said the company was building out facilities in Brazil, while selling more well stimulation equipment into the Middle East, China and Russia.

  • Ford to shut more plants as Europe losses grow Thursday, 25 Oct 2012 | 11:42 AM ET

    LONDON-- Ford pressed ahead Thursday with its plan to slash production in Europe, announcing another plant closure and 1,500 more job cuts, as it warned that annual losses in the region will exceed $1.5 billion this year and next.

  • PRECIOUS-Gold bounces from 7 week low, eyes Bank of Japan Thursday, 25 Oct 2012 | 10:52 AM ET

    *Eyes on next week's Bank of Japan policy meeting. Spot gold was up 0.8 percent at $1,714.36 an ounce at 1034 GMT, bouncing off Wednesday's seven-week low of $1,698.39, while U.S. gold futures for December delivery were up $14.90 an ounce at $1,716.50.

  • *Q3 sales fall 19 pct to $6.68 bln vs consensus $6.75 bln. *Core EPS $1.51 vs consensus $1.44; full-year outlook held. LONDON, Oct 25- AstraZeneca's sales slumped by a bigger-than-expected 19 percent in the third quarter, underscoring the challenges confronting the drugmaker's new chief executive, Pascal Soriot.

  • UPDATE 2-Unilever sales spruced up by China demand Thursday, 25 Oct 2012 | 9:53 AM ET

    *Strong demand for cleaning, hair and skin products in China. LONDON, Oct 25- Unilever's quarterly sales growth beat forecasts as demand for cleaning and personal care products in China helped the consumer goods group outshine larger rival Nestle.

  • Ford cutting 1,500 UK jobs as Europe losses grow Thursday, 25 Oct 2012 | 8:58 AM ET

    LONDON-- Carmaker Ford announced Thursday it will cut 1,500 jobs in Britain, closing a plant and eliminating a stamping and tooling facility, as it warned that losses in Europe will exceed $1.5 billion this year. Ford Motor Co., which on Wednesday announced the closure of another plant in Brussels, is struggling in Europe, as are many major carmakers.

  • *Q3 sales fall 19 pct to $6.68 bln vs consensus $6.75 bln. Core EPS $1.51 vs consensus $1.44; full-year outlook held. LONDON, Oct 25- AstraZeneca's sales slumped by a bigger-than-expected 19 percent in the third quarter, underscoring the challenges confronting the drugmaker's new chief executive, Pascal Soriot.

  • *Q3 sales fall 19 pct to $6.68 bln vs consensus $6.75 bln. Core EPS $1.51 vs consensus $1.44; full-year outlook held. LONDON, Oct 25- AstraZeneca's sales slumped by a bigger-than-expected 19 percent in the third quarter, underscoring the challenges confronting the drugmaker's new chief executive, Pascal Soriot.

  • S&P indicates it may upgrade Rosneft after BP deal Thursday, 25 Oct 2012 | 2:41 AM ET

    MOSCOW-- Ratings agency Standard and Poor's has indicated it may upgrade its rating on Rosneft following the Russian oil company's agreement to buy a joint venture between BP and a group of Russian billionaires. Rosneft on Monday agreed to buy TNK-BP, Russia's third-largest oil producer.

  • Reuters World News Highlights 2200 GMT Oct 24 Wednesday, 24 Oct 2012 | 10:00 PM ET

    BEIRUT/ CAIRO- Syria said on Wednesday its military command was still studying a proposal for a holiday ceasefire with rebels- contradicting international mediator Lakhdar Brahimi's announcement that Damascus had agreed to a truce.

  • UNITED NATIONS, Oct 24- Russia slammed leaks to the media from a closed-door Security Council briefing on Syria on Wednesday, saying diplomats and journalists involved should be stripped of U.N. accreditation fo r the release of confidential information.

  • Reuters World News Highlights 1800 GMT GMT, Oct 24 Wednesday, 24 Oct 2012 | 6:00 PM ET

    BEIRUT/ CAIRO- Syria said on Wednesday its military command was still studying a proposal for a holiday ceasefire with rebels- contradicting international mediator Lakhdar Brahimi's announcement that Damascus had agreed to a truce.

  • *First court verdict to thwart Gazprom's take-or-pay claim. *Gazprom paid $2.5 bln to European firms as part of pricing deal. PRAGUE/ MOSCOW, Oct 24- RWE Transgas, the Czech unit of Germany's RWE, has won a landmark dispute with Gazprom over gas contracts, after a court ruled for the first time that a company did not have to pay fines under a ``take-or-pay'' clause.

  • Oct 24- Thermo Fisher Scientific raised its full-year forecast for the second time this year as the world's largest laboratory equipment maker benefited from its presence in Asia, even as the weak U.S. and European economies dragged on its competitors.

  • UPDATE 2-China to approve only a few new reactors by 2015 Wednesday, 24 Oct 2012 | 1:41 PM ET

    *France's Areva, Japan's Toshiba could benefit. BEIJING, Oct 24- China will approve a small number of new nuclear reactors before 2015 to be built only in coastal regions, the government said on Wednesday, as it unveiled a raft of measures to spur private investments in energy.

  • Bankers set for $30-$50 mln from TNK-BP - Freeman Wednesday, 24 Oct 2012 | 11:27 AM ET

    LONDON, Oct 24- Bankers will likely pick up $30- $50 million for their work on Russian state-owned oil group Rosneft's $55 billion takeover of TNK-BP, according to Freeman Consulting. Data from Thomson Reuters and Freeman showed fees average about $35 million on $10 billion deals, smaller than the TNK-BP.

  • *France's Areva, Japan's Toshiba among reactor builders that could benefit. BEIJING, Oct 24- China will restrict the number of new nuclear reactor approvals to a ``small amount'' before 2015, and will only allow them to be built in coastal regions, the government said on Wednesday.

  • McNamara's effects sell for over $1M at NY auction Wednesday, 24 Oct 2012 | 10:17 AM ET

    NEW YORK-- A silver paperweight that President John F. Kennedy gave to Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara after the Cuban missile crisis sold for $95,500 at an auction Tuesday of McNamara's personal effects, Sotheby's said. McNamara, who died in 2009, served as the head of the Pentagon from 1961 to 1968, first for JFK and then for President Lyndon B. Johnson.