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  • US STOCKS-Wall St edges higher after Philly Fed data Thursday, 20 Mar 2014 | 10:48 AM ET

    Wall Street opened lower but reversed course after the Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank said its business activity index rose far more than expected in March, rebounding after a contraction in February.

  • *For poll data see EQUITYPOLL1. NEW YORK, March 20- Global tensions and reduced stimulus from the Federal Reserve will keep U.S. stock market gains modest for the rest of 2014, a Reuters poll found. "We're in a little bit of a negative risk-reward dynamic for equities," said Barry Knapp, managing director of equity research at Barclays Capital in New York.

  • Philly Fed factory activity index jumps in March Thursday, 20 Mar 2014 | 10:09 AM ET

    NEW YORK, March 20- Factory activity in the U.S. mid-Atlantic region expanded far more than expected in March, a survey showed on Thursday. The Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank said its business activity index rose to 9.0 in March from -6.3 in February, topping economists' expectations for 3.8, according to a Reuters poll.

  • UPDATE 5-Brent crude eases on U.S. rate rise expectations Thursday, 20 Mar 2014 | 10:04 AM ET

    *U.S. stockpiles rise more than expected; fall at Cushing hub. LONDON, March 20- Brent crude oil eased on Thursday after the Federal Reserve indicated the U.S. central bank could end its stimulus programme and raise interest rates sooner than expected. Brent was down 11 cents at $105.74 a barrel by 1357 GMT, after settling 94 cents lower on Wednesday.

  • NEW YORK, March 20- U.S. stocks dipped at the open on Thursday as investors continued to digest comments from Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, who raised the specter of an earlier-than-expected hike in interest rates.

  • *Ukraine in view as Russia seizes naval bases. *Lennar Corp, Jabil Circuit both rise after results. NEW YORK, March 20- U.S. stock index futures pointed to a modestly lower open on Thursday as investors continued to digest comments from Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, who raised the specter of an earlier-than-expected rate hike.

  • The halt announced on Thursday was for enrollments in a trial sponsored by Mayo Clinic, and comes a week after the FDA ordered Geron to cease company-sponsored trials of the drug over similar concerns. The FDA on March 12 had ordered a complete halt to trials that were testing imetelstat to treat thrombocythemia and multiple myeloma, two forms of blood cancer.

  • FOREX-Dollar surges after strong message from Fed Thursday, 20 Mar 2014 | 8:08 AM ET

    *China's yuan deepens slide, hits one-year low. LONDON, March 20- The dollar powered higher against its major currency peers on Thursday after a surprise message from Federal Reserve head Janet Yellen that rises in U.S. interest rates were not as far away as most had thought.

  • PRECIOUS-Gold hits three-week lows after Fed comments Thursday, 20 Mar 2014 | 6:44 AM ET

    *Gold extends losses after falling 1.8 pct on Thursday. LONDON, March 20- Gold hit three-week lows on Thursday after posting its biggest one-day fall since late January in the previous session, reacting to comments from Federal Reserve head Janet Yellen suggesting U.S. interest rates could rise sooner than expected.

  • FOREX-Dollar pauses after Fed-led surge Thursday, 20 Mar 2014 | 4:49 AM ET

    *Dollar strength helps push China's yuan to one-year low. LONDON, March 20- The dollar steadied against its major currency peers on Thursday after being jerked higher overnight by a surprise message from Federal Reserve head Janet Yellen that rises in U.S. interest rates are not as far away as most had thought.

  • HONG KONG, March 20- Hong Kong shares tumbled to an eight-month low on Thursday as disappointing China Mobile earnings and news that the Federal Reserve could raise U.S. interest rates sooner than expected battered the market. The Hang Seng Index ended down 1.8 percent at 21,182.16, its lowest close since July 10.

  • TOKYO, March 20- Japanese stocks tumbled to a six-week low on Thursday after Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen raised the prospect of interest rate hikes starting earlier than previously thought, sparking a selloff in equities before a three-day weekend. The Nikkei share average ended 1.7 percent lower at 14,224.23, the lowest closing level since Feb. 6.

  • TOKYO/ SYDNEY, March 20- The dollar traded near two-week highs against a basket of major currencies on Thursday, after comments from Federal Reserve head Janet Yellen prompted investors to bring forward their U.S. interest rate hike expectations.

  • *Rebound in China property on private placement approval. HONG KONG/ SHANGHAI, March 20- Hong Kong shares, tracking overseas weakness, fell on Thursday on news the Federal Reserve might raise U.S interest rates sooner than previously thought. The China Enterprises Index of the top Chinese listings in Hong Kong fell 1.2 percent.

  • SINGAPORE, March 20- Gold hovered near three-week lows on Thursday as the U.S. dollar jumped on expectations the Federal Reserve could end its bond-buying programme this fall, hurting the metal's safe haven appeal as a hedge against inflation.

  • TOKYO, March 20- Japanese government bond prices were mostly steady on Thursday, with a slip in Tokyo stocks helping offset negative pressure from an overnight retreat by U.S. A regular bond-buying operation by the Bank of Japan, part of the central bank's massive monetary stimulus scheme, also underpinned JGBs.

  • METALS-London copper falls on U.S. interest rate signal Wednesday, 19 Mar 2014 | 10:09 PM ET

    SYDNEY, March 20- London copper fell on Thursday but remained well above three-and-a-half year lows hit the session before, after the Federal Reserve chair signalled interest rates could rise next year, eroding support for liquidity friendly commodities.

  • *Foreigners sold record 1.09 trillion yen in Japan shares last week. TOKYO, March 20- Japanese stocks retreated from one-week highs on Thursday after Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen raised the prospect of interest rate hikes starting earlier than previously thought, sparking a selloff in equity markets and lifting the U.S. dollar.

  • PRECIOUS-Gold hits 3-week low on Fed, firm U.S. dollar Wednesday, 19 Mar 2014 | 8:36 PM ET

    SINGAPORE, March 20- Gold hit its weakest in three weeks on Thursday as the U.S. dollar jumped on expectations the Federal Reserve could end its bond-buying programme this fall, hurting the metal's safe haven appeal as a hedge against inflation. *Cash gold hit a low of $1,325.34 an ounce, the weakest since Feb. 28, and stood at $1,328.84 by 0012 GMT, down $2.00.

  • *Monthly bond purchases cut by $10 bln as expected. WASHINGTON, March 19- The U.S. Federal Reserve will probably end its massive bond-buying program this fall, and could start raising interest rates around six months later, Fed Chair Janet Yellen said on Wednesday, in a comment which sent stocks and bonds tumbling.