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  • Dec 27- The world's mobile phone carriers have failed to implement technology fixes available since 2008 that would have thwarted the National Security Agency's ability to eavesdrop on many mobile phone calls, a cyber security expert says.

  • NEW YORK, Dec 27- As Wall Street's best year in more than 15 draws to a close, few are expecting a repeat performance in 2014, though traders have plenty of reasons to feel optimistic.

  • Brazil hikes IOF tax on debit card purchases abroad Friday, 27 Dec 2013 | 4:16 PM ET

    BRASILIA, Dec 27- The Brazilian government said on Friday it will raise a tax on operations with debit cards and travelers checks made abroad, in a move that will raise the country's tax intake by 552 million reais per year. Starting on Saturday, the government will hike the financial operation tax, known as IOF, to 6.38 percent from 0.38 percent on those operations.

  • Dec 27- U.S. stock indexes closed mostly flat on Friday, with some key technology companies eroding recent gains after investors took a break from a rally that has pushed stocks to all-time highs. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 1.47 points or 0.01 percent, to finish unofficially at 16,478.41.

  • *U.S. crude oil tops $100 for first time in 2 months. NEW YORK, Dec 27- U.S. crude oil futures settled on Friday with their highest gain in more than two months driven by the fourth straight weekly decline in oil inventories while Brent drew support from civil unrest in Africa that has cut off supplies.

  • NEW YORK, Dec 27- The euro jumped to its strongest level against the dollar in more than two years on Friday as banks adjusted positions for the year end, while the yen hit five-year lows for a second straight session.

  • The inflows into stock funds in the week ended Dec. 25 reversed the previous week's outflows of $3.4 billion and marked the strongest demand in four weeks, according to the data compiled by Reuters from EPFR Global and past Bank of America Merrill Lynch Global Research reports.

  • *Corn gains limited after China rejects U.S. *Wheat gains on short covering, bargain buying. Chicago Board of Trade January soybeans added 1 percent, or 12-3/ 4 cents, to $13.31-1/ 2 a bushel, finishing with a weekly loss of 0.6 percent.

  • ANKARA/ ISTANBUL, Dec 27- Protesters demanding Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan resign over a high-level corruption scandal clashed with riot police in Istanbul on Friday, while across the city thousands staged a rival show of support for the embattled leader.

  • Krafcik led the U.S. arm of Hyundai as it set sales records by using innovative marketing techniques including a program that allowed Hyundai buyers who lost their jobs during the recession in 2009 to return their new cars.

  • BOSTON, Dec 27- Target Corp said PIN data of its customers' bank ATM cards were stolen as part of the massive data breach at the third-largest U.S. retailer, but it was confident that the information was "safe and secure." The stolen PIN data was "strongly encrypted" when it was removed from Target's systems, spokeswoman Molly Snyder said in a statement on Friday. "

  • *Clashes flare in Cairo, other cities; scores injured. The violence broke out after Friday prayers and the health ministry said 87 people were injured nationwide in the clashes, which flared in Cairo and at least four other cities.

  • *U.S. crude oil tops $100 for first time in 2 months. NEW YORK, Dec 27- U.S. crude oil futures rose by more than $1 per barrel on Friday after government data showed U.S. oil inventories fell for the fourth straight week while Brent was supported by civil unrest in Africa that has cut off supplies.

  • DETROIT, Dec 27- Hyundai Motor Co said on Friday its U.S. chief, John Krafcik, is stepping down after his contract was not renewed and will be replaced by the U.S. sales chief David Zuchowski. Krafcik had been the chief of Hyundai's U.S. operations since 2008, when its share of the U.S. market was 3 percent. It rose to 4.9 percent in 2012..

  • Dec 27- Toyota Motor Corp is recalling more than 400,000 vehicles in Saudi Arabia that were produced from 2006 to 2010 due to concerns about unintended acceleration, the company and Saudi Arabia's trade ministry said.

  • NEW YORK, Dec 27- Target Corp said that PIN codes used to secure ATM cards were stolen as part of the massive data breach at the third-largest U.S. retailer, though it said it was confident the data was "safe and secure."

  • NEW YORK, Dec 27- U.S. crude oil stocks fell 4.7 million barrels last week as the Gulf Coast continued to shed inventories, even as U.S. oil production reached a 25- year high, data from the Energy Information Administration showed on Friday. Crude oil stocks on the Gulf Coast fell 5.14 million barrels in the week ending Dec. 20 to 176 million barrels.

  • NEW YORK, Dec 27- Target Corp on Friday confirmed that "strongly encrypted PIN data" was stolen as part of the massive data breach at the third-largest U.S. retailer during the first three weeks of the holiday season.

  • *Textron to buy Beechcraft for $1.4 billion in cash. Twitter Inc, the social media stock, which has nearly tripled in price since going public in early November, slid 7.1 percent to $68.11 by midday. I think it's normal market behavior at the end of the year, "said Robert Francello, head of equity trading for Apex Capital in San Francisco.

  • PANAMA CITY, Dec 27- The growth of Panama's vibrant economy eased slightly in October, weakened by slower traffic through the Central American nation's trademark canal and ports, official data showed on Friday. The finance ministry projects Panama's $33 billion economy will expand 8.5 percent this year.

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