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  • *Sulzer worth $4.6 bln, Dresser-Rand worth $5.6 bln. Sept 17- Swiss pump maker Sulzer said on Wednesday it is in talks on a potential combination with U.S. compressor and turbine maker Dresser-Rand, a deal that would create a machinery company with a combined market valuation exceeding $10 billion.

  • CHICAGO, Sept 17- Chicago Board of Trade soybeans and wheat firmed slightly on Wednesday as bargain hunters stepped into the market to provide a boost to commodities that were trending near four-year lows, traders said. "The new crop is going to overwhelm the balance tables," Matt Zeller, director of market information at INTL FCStone, said in a note to clients.

  • *Smiths Group falls after slump in operating profit. LONDON, Sept 17- European equities advanced in cautious trading on Wednesday on expectations that the U.S. Britain's blue-chip FTSE 100 index closed down 0.2 percent, against a 0.4 percent gain for the FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares to 1,385.09 points.

  • Investors buy German debt at negative rates Wednesday, 17 Sep 2014 | 12:20 PM ET

    Germany auctioned 3.34 billion euros Wednesday in two-year notes at an average yield of minus 0.07 percent. Expectation the European Central Bank will buy bonds has also driven down yields, which move opposite to prices. The European Central Bank has slashed its interest rate benchmarks in an attempt to spur growth and lift inflation.

  • PARIS, Sept 17- Thousands of French "notaires" held what they said were their first-ever street protests in Paris and Marseille on Wednesday to challenge plans by President Francois Hollande to deregulate their activities.

  • *OPEC meets on Nov. 27 to set policy. DUBAI/ LONDON, Sept 17- OPEC may not need to cut its oil output target at a meeting in November, a Gulf OPEC delegate and other OPEC sources said on Wednesday, as strengthening demand in coming winter months should support oil prices that have fallen below $100 a barrel.

  • Insurers turn to big data to help identify risks Wednesday, 17 Sep 2014 | 10:48 AM ET

    MONACO, Sept 17- Insurance companies are increasingly turning to "big data" from satellites, social media and even cigarette sales at gas stations to help identify risks and build up customer profiles. Hamilton Re, a new Bermuda- based reinsurer, hopes that heavy data-crunching technology will give it an advantage over rivals and boost its bottom line.

  • European shares rise as Fed statement seen less hawkish Wednesday, 17 Sep 2014 | 10:45 AM ET

    *Smiths Group falls after slump in operating profit. LONDON, Sept 17- European equities advanced in cautious trading on Wednesday on expectations that the U.S. Britain's blue-chip FTSE 100 index was down 0.1 percent, against a 0.5 percent gain for the FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares to 1,386.31 points by 1405 GMT.

  • Exodus hits U.S. law firm Bingham amid merger talks Wednesday, 17 Sep 2014 | 9:37 AM ET

    Sept 17- Twenty-two partners have jumped ship en masse from Bingham McCutchen's marquee restructuring practice, raising questions about the fate of the law firm's closely watched merger talks with the larger Morgan Lewis& Bockius.

  • South Africa's richest man Johann Rupert has a track record of leading Swiss-based Richemont through difficult times and his comeback at the company's annual general meeting in Geneva provided some comfort for investors.

  • Credit Suisse loans under US Fed scrutiny: Report Wednesday, 17 Sep 2014 | 8:09 AM ET

    The Federal Reserve has asked Credit Suisse to address problems relating to the bank's underwriting and sale of leveraged loans.

  • For Roche CEO, celebrating failure is key to success Wednesday, 17 Sep 2014 | 8:06 AM ET

    LONDON, Sept 17- Roche Chief Executive Severin Schwan likes to crack open the champagne with his drug research teams at the end of a big project- especially when they fail.

  • Barcelona, Spain, tops innovative cities contest Wednesday, 17 Sep 2014 | 8:02 AM ET

    Barcelona was awarded 5 million euro as top finisher. Four others were awarded 1 million euros each: the metropolitan area of Kirklees, England, and the cities of Stockholm; Warsaw, Poland; and Athens, Greece.

  • Laments, long lines amid Air France pilots' strike Wednesday, 17 Sep 2014 | 7:21 AM ET

    groaned Stephanie Leon, parking a palm on her forehead in distress as she walked into Charles de Gaulle airport and saw the departures board: Her Air France flight to the Dominican Republic had been cancelled.

  • Iraq's oil output revival at stake for want of water Wednesday, 17 Sep 2014 | 7:14 AM ET

    DUBAI, Sept 17- A lack of water threatens Iraq's plans to raise its oil output, boost its stumbling economy and become a leading producer in the region after Saudi Arabia. A multi-billion dollar common seawater injection scheme designed to boost production from the giant export oilfields in Iraq's south is snarled up in red tape and acrimony.

  • BERLIN, Sept 17- Oliver Samwer and his brothers Marc and Alexander are on the brink of becoming Germany's newest billionaires with the flotations of Rocket Internet and the European online fashion site Zalando it helped launch in 2008..

  • PARIS, Sept 17- President Francois Hollande has angered everyone from medics to taxi drivers enough to drive them onto the streets in recent months but there is one profession few expected to see on the march: France's well-heeled "notaires".

  • *Need for skilled talent puts London at odds with national policy. LONDON, Sept 17- When Efe Cakarel picked London as a new base for his video streaming company, he was counting on its location, capital markets and infrastructure, but also on the city's reputation as a hub for talented people from Europe and beyond.

  • Eurozone August inflation revised up to 0.4 pct Wednesday, 17 Sep 2014 | 5:40 AM ET

    The European Union's statistics office, Eurostat, said Wednesday the eurozone's annual inflation rate was 0.4 percent, up from its initial estimate of 0.3 percent published late last month. However, the Eurostat figures showed that the eurozone's third- and fourth-largest economies, Italy and Spain, saw prices fall by an annual 0.2 percent in August.

  • Chinese shoe manufacturer says CEO, cash vanished Wednesday, 17 Sep 2014 | 5:37 AM ET

    Germany- listed Ultrasonic AG said in a statement Tuesday it has been unable to reach its chief executive, Qingyong Wu, and chief operating officer, Minghong Wu, since the weekend.