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  • July 31- MasterCard Inc, the world's second-largest debit and credit card company, posted a better-than-expected 10 percent rise in quarterly profit, as more customers used its cards to make purchases. MasterCard shares were up 2.8 percent at $78 in trading before the bell on Thursday.

  • FREETOWN/ ACCRA, July 31- Sierra Leone declared a state of emergency and called in troops to quarantine epicenters of Ebola on Thursday, joining Liberia in imposing tough controls to curb the worst ever outbreak of the virus amid fears it could spread beyond West Africa.

  • Heavy shelling, clashes resume in Libya's Tripoli Thursday, 31 Jul 2014 | 6:50 AM ET

    TRIPOLI, July 31- Heavy shelling resumed on Thursday in southern Tripoli where rival militia brigades were battling for control of the capital's main airport in some of the worst clashes since the 2011 revolt which ousted Muammar Gaddafi.

  • LAUNCESTON, Australia, July 31- While it's easy to point the finger of blame at Rio Tinto's former management and feel a tad smug about their downfall, the real lesson of the company's humiliating exit from its Mozambique coal assets is that the wheels of the next commodity boom are now in motion.

  • *OPEC oil output rises in July from June- Reuters survey. LONDON, July 31- Brent crude slipped below $106 a barrel on Thursday as higher OPEC output and disappointing demand in the United States outweighed tensions in the Middle East, Africa and Ukraine.

  • SAN FRANCISCO, July 31- Facebook Inc is launching a mobile app that gives users in Zambia free access to a handful of online services on mobile phones, broadening an effort to boost Internet usage in underdeveloped countries.

  • *OPEC oil output rises in July from June- Reuters survey. SINGAPORE, July 31- Brent crude slipped towards $106 a barrel on Thursday and was set to post its biggest monthly loss in more than a year as higher OPEC output and disappointing demand in the United States outweighed tensions in the Middle East and Africa.

  • Brent slips toward $106 as US fuel demand disappoints Thursday, 31 Jul 2014 | 12:14 AM ET

    *OPEC oil output rises in July from June- Reuters survey. SINGAPORE, July 31- Brent crude slipped towards $106 a barrel on Thursday and was set to post its biggest monthly loss in more than a year as higher OPEC output and disappointing demand in the United States outweighed tensions in the Middle East and Africa.

  • *U.S., EU impose more sanctions on Russia over Ukraine. LONDON, July 30- Brent crude oil steadied below $108 a barrel on Wednesday, weakened by ample supplies in Europe and Asia, while U.S crude edged higher after data showed a large drop in stockpiles.

  • INSIGHT-Mobile money grows in Africa but hurdles remain Wednesday, 30 Jul 2014 | 10:13 AM ET

    *Mobile money faces obstacles to growth outside Kenya,. DAKAR, July 30- IT technician Mansour Diagne is one of the lucky few in Senegal to have a bank account, but when he needs to pay some bills or transfer cash to his sisters on the other side of the crowded capital Dakar, he reaches for his mobile phone.

  • Goodyear 2Q profit up 18 percent but shares slump Wednesday, 30 Jul 2014 | 9:32 AM ET

    AKRON, Ohio— Goodyear Tire's second-quarter earnings jumped 18 percent to $213 million, though revenue was softer than many had expected and volume slowed in Latin America. Adjusted earnings of 80 cents per share matched Wall Street estimates, according to a poll by Zacks Investment Research.

  • July 30- Rockwell Automation Inc, whose automated systems help factories run smoothly, reported a steeper-than-expected fall in quarterly profit, hurt by lower sales outside the United States and in its largest business.

  • OPEC oil output rises in July on fragile Libyan rebound Wednesday, 30 Jul 2014 | 8:08 AM ET

    That could hinder OPEC's ability to boost output later in the year, when the International Energy Agency expects demand for OPEC crude to rise. Outages in the group, such as in Iraq and Libya, are effectively helping OPEC to balance the market, rather than voluntary cutbacks, say analysts.

  • *U.S., EU impose more sanctions on Russia over Ukraine. While there has been no major disruption to oil supplies due to tensions in the Middle East, Africa or Europe, fears that exports could be curtailed underpin crude prices.

  • UPDATE 3-Brent steady around $108 in range-bound market Wednesday, 30 Jul 2014 | 4:40 AM ET

    *U.S., EU impose more sanctions on Russia over Ukraine. *Libya says oil output stays at 500,000 bpd despite unrest. The European Union and the United States imposed further sanctions against Russia on Tuesday, targeting its energy banking and defense sectors in the strongest international action yet over Moscow's support for rebels in Ukraine.

  • LONDON, July 30- Tullow Oil Plc drifted into the red after writing off more than $400 million in exploration costs but the Africa- focused explorer remained confident that its strategy will pay off.

  • UPDATE 2-Brent hovers near $107.50; U.S. data, Fed eyed Wednesday, 30 Jul 2014 | 3:14 AM ET

    *U.S., EU impose more sanctions on Russia over Ukraine. The focus is now on Russia and how President Vladimir Putin will react to further sanctions imposed by the European Union and the United States.

  • UPDATE 1-Brent hovers near $107.50 ahead of U.S. data Wednesday, 30 Jul 2014 | 1:15 AM ET

    *U.S., EU impose more sanctions on Russia over Ukraine. *Libya says oil output stays at 500,000 bpd. Geopolitical tensions in the Middle East, Africa and Europe continued to underpin prices, although so far there has been no major disruption to oil supplies.

  • Brent hovers near $107.50 ahead of U.S. data Tuesday, 29 Jul 2014 | 11:43 PM ET

    *U.S., EU impose more sanctions on Russia over Ukraine. *Libya says oil output stays at 500,000 bpd. Geopolitical tensions in the Middle East, Africa and Europe continued to underpin prices, although so far there has been no major disruption to oil supplies.

  • WASHINGTON, July 29- The Obama administration on Tuesday pushed for Congress to renew a 14- year-old trade program giving African countries duty-free access to U.S. markets, warning that allowing the program to expire would disrupt trade flows between the two regions.