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NEW YORK, March 13- The yen rose against the euro and the dollar on Thursday after U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry signaled a possible response from the West if a referendum in Ukraine's Crimea region goes ahead on Sunday.
NEW YORK-- Home decor retailer Bed Bath& Beyond is asking its vendors to voluntarily cut down use of some harmful chemicals in their products. Bed Bath& Beyond said it recommends vendors try to reduce or eliminate those substances on a voluntary basis.
KUALA LUMPUR/ WASHINGTON, March 14- Satellites picked up faint electronic pulses from Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 after it went missing on Saturday, but the signals gave no information about where the stray jet was heading and little else about its fate, two sources close to the investigation said on Thursday.
CINCINNATI-- Supermarket operator Kroger said Thursday that it will buy back up to $1 billion of its shares. Kroger, which has 2,640 grocery stores nationwide under banners such as QFC, Food 4 Less, and Fred Meyer, also declared a regular quarterly dividend of 16.5 cents per share, payable June 1 to shareholders of record May 15.
SAN FRANCISCO/ SEATTLE, March 13- It may be one of Microsoft Corp's biggest squandered opportunities. The speed with which apps like Quip have been adopted is forcing Microsoft to intensify its efforts to bring the powerful but ageing Office software suite to tablets and smartphones, according to people close to the company.
Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx on Thursday promised an "aggressive investigation" into whether General Motors was slow to report to the federal government problems with ignition switches in its autos, which have led to 12 deaths.
CHICAGO-- Grain futures were mostly lower Thursday on the Chicago Board of Trade. Wheat for May delivery fell 10 cents to $6.7375 a bushel; May corn was 3.50 cents lower at 4.85 a bushel; May oats fell 4.50 cents to $4.40 a bushel; while May soybeans advanced 9.25 cents to $13.9625 a bushel.
*Ukraine tensions increase; China data adds to more worries about slowdown. NEW YORK, March 13- World stock indexes dropped and the yen climbed against the dollar and euro on Thursday as concerns increased over the trajectory of the crisis in Ukraine.
WASHINGTON, March 13- Two U.S. senators urged the U.S. Department of Agriculture to approve disaster assistance for small pork producers affected by a deadly virus that has killed more than four million pigs across the United States in the past year.
*Tensions over Ukraine, China slowdown fears lend support. NEW YORK/ LONDON, March 13- Gold rose to a six-month high on Thursday as fears of economic slowdown in China and lingering worries about Russia's standoff with Ukraine over Crimea dampened demand for riskier assets and boosted bullion's appeal.
TORONTO, March 13- Toronto-Dominion Bank hopes to expand its U.S. wealth management business, targeting a million people with at least $100,000 in liquid assets who already are customers of its growing U.S. retail bank, said a senior executive of Canada's second-largest lender.
*Arabica crawls toward 2- yr high on Brazil weather worries. NEW YORK/ LONDON, March 13- ICE arabica coffee futures rose and traded near a two-year high on weather-related crop concerns in top grower Brazil, while cocoa rallied the most since January and recovered the previous day's sharp losses on bargain-hunting.
March 13- Three anti-union Volkswagen workers have sued the German automaker and the United Auto Workers in a U.S. court, alleging that VW and the union improperly colluded in the run-up to a union election in Tennessee that the UAW lost.
WASHINGTON, March 13- Two U.S. senators on Thursday urged the U.S. Department of Agriculture to approve disaster assistance for small pork producers affected by a deadly virus that has killed more than four million pigs across the United States in the past year.
*Fischer, Brainard, Powell expected to win Senate approval. WASHINGTON, March 13- Stanley Fischer, President Barack Obama's nominee to be No. 2 at the U.S.
Secretary of State John Kerry signalled a possible response from the West if a referendum in Ukraine's Crimea region goes ahead on Sunday. Kerry's comments before Congress, together with a warning by Ukraine's acting president Oleksander Turchinov of a possible Russian invasion, rekindled fears of a war breaking out in the region.
The Center for Food Safety said on Thursday that it believes the USDA may have succumbed to outside pressure, possibly from Monsanto Co., the developer of the genetic trait in the biotech alfalfa. Neither the USDA nor Monsanto responded to requests for comment on Thursday.
NEW YORK-- A look at the 10 biggest percentage gainers on New York Stock Exchange at 1 p.m.:. Williams-Sonoma Inc. rose 10.9 percent to $65.40. Christopher& Banks Corp. rose 9.7 percent to $6.78.
Hecla Mining Co. rose$. 05 or 1.4 percent, to $3.51. Pan American Silver Corp. rose$. 32 or 2.2 percent, to $14.89. Silver Standard Resources Inc. rose$. 27 or 2.5 percent, to $11.21.
NEW YORK-- A look at the 10 biggest percentage decliners on New York Stock Exchange at 1 p.m.:. Ameresco Inc. fell 17.0 percent to $8.20. Methode Electronics fell 12.9 percent to $30.85.