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UPDATE 1-BUSINESS-NEWS-SCHEDULE AT 1230 GMT / 8.30 AM ET

(Updates slug format for the London story on bank stress tests)

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TOP STORIES

BHP announces spin-off plan, no share buyback for now

LONDON/MELBOURNE - The world's biggest mining company, BHP Billiton, announces plans to spin off businesses worth an estimated $16 billion, most of them acquired in a 2001 merger, to focus on its most profitable activities. (BHPBILLITON-RESULTS/ (UPDATE 4), moved, by Sonali Paul and Silvia Antonioli, 700 words)

ECB in policy limbo, boxed in by its own plans

FRANKFURT - The European Central Bank is in a policy no man's land, bombarded by news of a stagnating euro zone economy but hesitant to move forward with new stimulus until measures announced in June work their way through in the months ahead (ECB-POLICY/ (ANALYSIS), moved, by Paul Carrel and Eva Taylor, 1,000 words)

UK inflation falls more than expected, rate expectations cut

LONDON - British inflation eased more than expected in July and the pace of house price growth slowed in June, according to data that underscored the Bank of England's message that it is in no rush to hike interest rates. (BRITAIN-INFLATION/ (UPDATE 1), moved, by Andy Bruce and Sarah Young, 500 words)

Stocks head higher as risk appetite returns

LONDON - Global stocks rise and money-market rates fall to new lows on renewed investor appetite for risk as investors breathe easier over the Ukraine crisis and see monetary policy remaining accommodative. (MARKETS-GLOBAL (WRAPUP 5, PICTURE), moved, by Lionel Laurent, 600 words)

INVESTMENT

Europe's banks in limbo as stress testers pore over data

LONDON - European banks have done the heavy-lifting in the toughest yet tests of their financial strength, but they cannot be sure how they have fared as regulators are making final checks and last-minute tweaks to their methodology, people involved tell Reuters. (EUROPE-BANKS/ECB, expect by 1600 GMT/12 ET, by Laura Noonan, 880 words)

UK's gas trading crown at risk as euro boosts Dutch appeal

LONDON - One area where Britain's dominance in Europe's financial sector has come under threat is natural gas trading where volumes on a Dutch trading hub are soaring, buoyed in part by European utilities who prefer to hedge their deals in euros. (GAS-TRADE/BRITAIN-NETHERLANDS/, moved, by Henning Gloystein and Jason Neely, 630 words)

Inflows to Hong Kong ETFs soar as foreigners bet on China

HONG KONG - Offshore investors are rallying behind China's undervalued equities by plowing billions of dollars into Hong Kong's exchange-traded funds denominated in the yuan currency. (CHINA-OFFSHORE/RQFII, moved, by Michelle Chen, 710 words)

China allows three more banks to import gold - sources

SINGAPORE - China has allowed three more banks, including a foreign lender, to import gold into the country, three sources with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters, as the world's biggest gold buyer further frees up its market. (GOLD-CHINA/IMPORTS, moved, By A. Ananthalakshmi, 470 words)

COMPANIES

Strong spring sales help Home Depot beat estimates

Home Depot Inc, the world's largest home improvement chain, reports a better-than-expected 5.8 percent rise in same-store sales as customers spend more on home repairs after a severe North American winter. (HOMEDEPOT RESULTS/ (UPDATE 2), moved, 400 words)

Maersk to buy back shares for first time in its history

COPENHAGEN - Denmark's A.P. Moller-Maersk announces the first share buy-back in its 110-year history as an overhaul of the sprawling shipping and oil empire leaves it with more cash than it can usefully invest. (MAERSK-RESULTS/ (UPDATE 3), moved, by Ole Mikkelsen and Teis Jensen, 600 words)

U.S. clears AstraZeneca over heart drug trial

LONDON - The U.S. government clears AstraZeneca over a major clinical trial used to win marketing approval for its important new heart drug Brilinta, following an investigation which had cast a shadow over its prospects. (ASTRAZENECA-BRILINTA/ (UPDATE 2), moved, by Ben Hirschler, 600 words)

Heinz to tighten supplier controls after China food scare

BEIJING/SHANGHAI - U.S. foodmaker H.J. Heinz says it will tighten controls over ingredients suppliers in China after it is forced to recall some infant food products from Chinese store shelves due to excess levels of lead. (CHINA-HEINZ/RECALL (UPDATE 2, PICTURE), moved, by Sui-Lee Wee and Adam Jourdan, 700 words)