Maritime pirates are honing their tactics and beefing up their weaponry. Here are the world’s most pirate-infested waters, and learn about individual attacks from each place.» Read More
*Shifting story puts White House under glare. WASHINGTON, May 22- Facing criticism from Democratic loyalists, the White House acknowledged on Wednesday that President Barack Obama's team has struggled to get its story straight on who knew what when about the IRS targeting of conservative groups.
GENEVA/ LONDON, May 22- The UK and French governments will join a global initiative that will require oil and mining firms to comply with new disclosure measures aimed at tackling corruption, British Prime Minister David Cameron said on Wednesday.
May 22- Starbucks Corp executive Michelle Gass, who was instrumental in the world's biggest coffee chain's post-recession U.S. turnaround, is leaving after more than 16 years to become chief customer officer at retailer Kohl's Corp..
GENEVA, May 22- Russia, long touted as an engine of growth for the stuttering global business aviation industry, needs radical changes in its taxation and regulatory system if it is to fulfil that promise, a U.S. expert said on Wednesday.
*Spot gold slides after brief break over $1,400/ oz. (Rewrites throughout, updates prices, changes byline, dateline NEW YORK, May 22- Gold turned sharply lower on Wednesday, as investors weighed U.S. , "said Michael Cuggino and president and portfolio manager at Permanent Portfolio Funds in San Francisco."
GENEVA/ LONDON, May 22- The UK and French governments are set to join a global initiative that will require oil and mining firms to comply with new disclosure measures aimed at reducing corruption, sources involved in the process said on Wednesday.
By Kim Dixon and Patrick Temple-West. WASHINGTON, May 22- The Internal Revenue Service official at the center of a scandal about extra tax scrutiny of conservative groups told Congress on Wednesday she had done nothing wrong but invoked her constitutional right not to answer questions.
NEW YORK-- Syneron Medical Ltd. on Wednesday posted a smaller loss in the first quarter despite a decline in sales, helped by lower costs. Sales for its Syneron and Candela devices fell 5 percent, hurt by economic conditions in Japan and the region encompassing Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
LONDON, May 22- Gold was flat on Wednesday, giving up earlier gains after U.S. Spot gold had briefly broken above $1,400 to a one-week high of $1,414.25 an ounce after Bernanke said the Fed needed to see further signs the economy was gaining traction before removing current measures.
*Cairo needs to cut spending but austerity risks more social unrest. *Analysts urge Cairo to move quickly to secure IMF loan. AL-SAFF, Egypt, May 22- Hundreds of soot-stained factory chimneys dot the horizon in the industrial city of al-Saff, south of Cairo, but only a few spew black smoke.
*Sudan hopes to offset loss of oil to South Sudan. NEAR SOFIYA, Sudan, May 22- In a hangar-shaped factory hall in central Sudan a dozen workers rush to pack refined white sugar gushing from a funnel into paper bags to be loaded on three trucks parked outside.
DUBAI, May 22- The lure of sub-saharan Africa, with its geographic proximity and promise of higher returns, is tempting cash-rich Gulf Arab bond investors to look south, a marked departure from the relative comfort and familiarity of the Middle East.
UNITED NATIONS-- The illegal trade in elephant ivory may constitute an important source of funding for armed groups, including the Lord's Resistance Army, threatening peace and security in central Africa, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki- moon said in a report to the Security Council.
Minister Pablo Groux is slamming Penn's proposal to a U.S. congressional subcommittee Monday that Bolivia be cut out of the Dakar motor sport rally unless it frees a U.S. citizen under house arrest two years after he was jailed without charge in a money-laundering probe.
May 22- Kohl's Corp said on Wednesday that Michelle Gass, who was instrumental in Starbucks Corp's U.S. turnaround several years ago, will join the department store in the new position of chief customer officer.
*Fed Chairman Bernanke speaks to Congress at 1400 GMT. LONDON, May 22- Gold extended earlier gains on Wednesday as the dollar weakened after U.S. On Tuesday, New York Federal Reserve Bank President William Dudley and St.
--Clyde Russell is a Reuters market analyst. LAUNCESTON, Australia, May 22- Asian giants China and India may be planning to improve the quality of coal they are burning, but it's unlikely any changes will have much effect on the level of imports for the foreseeable future.
PERTH, May 22- U.S. crude futures prices fell below $96 a barrel on Wednesday after an unexpected increase in U.S. gasoline stockpiles ahead of the summer driving season in the world's largest oil consumer. July oil futures contract fell 44 cents to $95.74 a barrel by 0028 GMT.
*EU says FTA with China would depend on concessions from Beijing. BRUSSELS, May 21- The European Union is willing to deepen trade ties with China but wants to see concessions from Beijing first, documents seen by Reuters on Tuesday showed.
WASHINGTON, May 21- Top Internal Revenue Service officials told Congress on Tuesday they were unaware of the agency's targeting of conservative groups for extra tax scrutiny until recently and were not deliberately misleading lawmakers last year when they did not reveal the practice.