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  • TOKYO, Dec 19- The safe-haven yen was on the back foot on Friday, as risk assets staged a broad recovery and investors awaited the outcome of a Bank of Japan meeting. The dollar added 0.2 percent against the yen to buy 119.06 yen, while the euro tacked on 0.2 percent to 146.21 yen. BOJ Governor Haruhiko Kuroda will likely repeat calls for firms to increase wages at his...

  • Dec 18- Chinese government approval for imports of a controversial type of Syngenta AG biotech corn increases the likelihood the seed maker will pay legal settlements, said some lawyers for U.S. farmers and exporters suing for damages from grain shipments rejected by Beijing. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, ends uncertainty about Agrisure Viptera...

  • UNITED NATIONS, Dec 18- Iran has not demonstrated sufficient flexibility in nuclear talks with six world powers aimed at ending a 12- year standoff with the Islamic Republic over its atomic ambitions, France and Britain said on Thursday. The remarks, at the United Nations, came just after the completion of another inconclusive round of negotiations in Geneva...

  • UNITED NATIONS, Dec 18- Iran has not demonstrated sufficient flexibility in nuclear talks with six world powers aimed at ending a 12- year standoff with the Islamic Republic over its atomic ambitions, France and Britain said on Thursday. The remarks at the United Nations came just after the completion of another inconclusive round of negotiations in Geneva...

  • BRUSSELS, Dec 18- EU leaders defended plans for the world's biggest trade deal with the United States, seeking on Thursday to counter hostility in Europe and clear the way for the accord to be agreed by the end of 2015.. The European Union and the United States have committed to an accord that would create a transatlantic market of 800 million people and encompass...

  • Germany's BASF, Gazprom scrap planned asset swap Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 1:23 PM ET

    BERLIN— Germany's BASF SE says it has agreed with Russian gas company Gazprom to call off an asset swap that the two firms had planned for the end of this year. The planned swap would have seen BASF subsidiary Wintershall transfer a jointly operated natural gas trading and storage business to Gazprom. In addition, Gazprom would have got a 50 percent share in the...

  • But the global context together with new reforms due to kick in next year are leading some to bet that France can achieve its 1 percent growth target for next year- modest by many standards but more than twice the 2014 growth estimate of 0.4 percent. "The chances of the government getting the 1 percent growth it based its budget on have risen quite substantially,"...

  • *US, Cuba have agreed to restore diplomatic ties. GENEVA, Dec 18- The European Union, which once launched a lawsuit to try to break the U.S. economic embargo on Cuba, said on Thursday it still wanted the blockade lifted but it was prepared to wait. Obama has wide executive powers to further open up to Cuba, and the White House wants to see the trade embargo lifted by the time...

  • Abu Dhabi's Etihad gets A380, complete with suite Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 12:17 PM ET

    ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates— Abu Dhabi's national carrier, Etihad, showcased on Thursday the arrival of its first Airbus A380, outfitted with "the only three-room suite in the sky." The A380 is the first of a fleet of 10 on order from Etihad Airways, which is to take delivery of four more of the double-decker jets next year. The airline also showcased Thursday its...

  • EU grain to enjoy spoils of Russian export curbs Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 12:05 PM ET

    *Australia, Argentina, Canada, Ukraine could also benefit. PARIS, Dec 18- European Union grain exporters will be the main beneficiaries of Russia's pullback from international grain markets as Moscow races to cool domestic prices in the face of economic crisis, analysts and traders said. "At current prices, it's clearly European wheat that will benefit," Andree...

  • FRANKFURT, Dec 18- The European Central Bank said on Thursday it would start publishing accounts of its monetary policy meetings next year, a move that will raise the ECB's transparency but still leave it behind other big central banks. The ECB will begin publishing the accounts of Governing Council discussions starting with the meeting on Jan. 22.

  • *Delivery delays in UK after "Black Friday" surge. BERLIN/ PARIS, Dec 18- The Christmas rush is exposing the limitations of internet-only retailers as surging orders cause delivery delays, allowing Europe's shops to fight back with "click and collect" services and more in-store theatre. Britain's biggest department store group John Lewis, which was early to...

  • Rise of the car-sharing apps poses threat to auto sector Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 10:15 AM ET

    The rise of the likes of car hire app Zipcar and car-pooling rival BlaBlaCar are expected to present new challenges to mass-market carmakers such as Ford, GM, Volvo, Renault and Volkswagen while presenting fresh opportunities for existing rental networks. Online taxi business Uber is another seeking a slice of the market with its UberPop operation, which...

  • Daimler puts aside $748 million for antitrust case Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 9:30 AM ET

    BERLIN— Daimler AG says it's booking a 600 million-euro charge related to European Union antitrust proceedings against commercial vehicle makers. Daimler said Thursday it's increasing a provision first made in 2011 to deal with the investigation by the EU's executive Commission after reviewing documents on which Brussels based its accusations, which it...

  • EU leaders agree to fund for jumpstarting growth Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 9:21 AM ET

    BRUSSELS— European Union leaders agreed Thursday to create a strategic investment fund that could generate up to 315 billion euros in private- and public-sector money to upgrade infrastructure, jumpstart the EU's sluggish economies and ignite job growth. The plan approved by leaders of the 28- nation EU at their one-day summit meeting in Brussels calls for...

  • DUBAI, Dec 18- Saudi Arabia's powerful oil minister said on Thursday that OPEC could not cut output without the support of other big producers and attempts to get them on board had not worked. Ali al-Naimi said it was impossible for OPEC to cut alone to reverse the oil price slump-- which he called temporary-- when others were pumping more, saying that could lead to...

  • Russian sailors leaving France without warship Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 8:29 AM ET

    The Vladivostok helicopter carrier is part of a strange and divisive arms deal now on hold— and perhaps on the verge of collapse— because of the conflict in Ukraine. France built it for Russia's navy but is now having second thoughts, notably amid heavy U.S. criticism of the deal. His change of heart reflects Europe's evolving relationship with Russia, a powerful...

  • LONDON, Dec 18- The Swiss franc tumbled on Thursday after its central bank announced a charge on deposits, wary of a flood of money exiting Russia and likely inflows from the euro zone if the ECB starts full-scale money printing early next year. The jitters of recent weeks calmed a touch as oil rose for a second day, although the pressure was still on Russia's rouble...

  • Ford shuts doors of Belgium's Genk plant Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 8:00 AM ET

    *Production to move to Valencia, Spain. GENK, Belgium, Dec 18- Ford Motor Company produced the last car at its plant in Genk, Belgium, on Thursday, closing the site which produced some 14 million vehicles over the past 50 years. The company decided in late 2012 to shut the factory which employed some 4,000 people and to relocate production of new models to Valencia, Spain.

  • Canada man finds woman for free trip around world Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 7:59 AM ET

    TORONTO— A Toronto man who made headlines last month by offering a free round-the-world air ticket to a woman with the same name as his ex-girlfriend has found Ms. Jordan Axani, 28, and his then girlfriend, named Elizabeth Gallagher, booked heavily discounted round-the-world air tickets in May, but their relationship ended and he didn't want her ticket to go to...