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  • Feb 5- Dubbed the energy highway's toll takers, master limited partnerships, or MLPs, get paid by shippers who move crude oil and refined products through their pipelines, storage terminals and other assets. In recent years, the U.S. Internal Revenue Service has expanded what companies qualify to form the tax-friendly structure, including oil field service...

  • Feb 5- Activist investors are putting the U.S. banking sector in their crosshairs, betting that headwinds whipping through the industry will accelerate consolidation among lenders. Hedge funds such as Ancora Advisors, Clover Partners and Seidman& Associates are buying up stakes in lenders across the U.S., from community banks to large regional lenders.

  • NEW YORK, Feb 5- Investment vehicles that funneled more than $100 billion into U.S. pipelines, storage and other facilities during the shale boom now face an existential crisis after oil tumbled so low that it upended assumptions about risks and returns they offer. The collapse in stock prices of such master limited partnerships as Plains All American and...

  • SHANGHAI, Feb 5- In the weeks leading up to the traditional Lunar New Year liquidity squeeze, China's central bank has been busy testing its new "interest rate corridor", a tool that could help reduce the need for deeper monetary policy easing. The People's Bank of China late last year introduced a new band to guide interest rates on loans and deposits, abolishing...

  • *China, HK market head into Chinese Spring Festival. SHANGHAI, Feb 5- China stocks dipped on Friday morning with participants taking the view that government moves to raise investment ceilings for overseas investors won't lead to an immediate surge in foreign buying of Chinese equities. China unveiled new rules on Thursday that would allow investors under the...

  • *Nonfarm payrolls forecast increasing 190,000 in January. WASHINGTON, Feb 5- U.S. employment gains likely slowed in January as the boost to hiring from unseasonably mild weather faded, but an expected rebound in wages and a steady jobless rate will suggest the labor market recovery remains firm. "Payroll growth has been running above trend over the past three...

  • *India Oct-Dec GDP seen at 7.3 pct, faster than China. *Ambit Capital estimates growth at only 5-6 pct. It's a good deal weaker than official data showing India to be the world's most dynamic big economy.

  • SHANGHAI, Feb 5- China's yuan weakened on Friday as local dollar demand ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday offset a steep fall in the greenback in global markets and a stronger central bank midpoint, traders said. The Chinese foreign exchange market will be closed all next week for the Lunar New Year holiday, and corporates typically need dollars to cover...

  • Following the detection of Zika in April, sales of repellant in Brazil rose by one-third last year, according to consumer research firm Nielsen, doubling revenue for the sector to $55.7 million. Brazil's biggest retailer, the Pao de Acucar Group, said supermarket sales of repellant were up 120 percent in the first weeks of 2016, compared to the same period a year...

  • BEIJING, Feb 5- China's main ruling Communist Party anti-graft watchdog has criticised four financial regulators after its latest inspection, saying they had problems ranging from using public funds for holidays to lack of corruption risk controls. The four- the People's Bank of China, State Administration of Foreign Exchange, China Banking Regulatory...

  • SINGAPORE/ BEIJING, Feb 5- Newly licensed Chinese oil importers are taking advantage of low crude prices and healthy domestic product margins, snapping up hundreds of thousands of barrels a day of a global surplus but also adding to China's swelling fuel exports. Armed with quotas that could make up a fifth of total Chinese crude imports this year, the...

  • JAKARTA, Feb 5- Indonesia's economy picked up speed in the fourth quarter but full-year growth was still the slowest since the global financial crisis as weak consumption, investment and exports took a toll on output. Southeast Asia's largest economy grew 4.79 percent in 2015, underpinned by public spending, data from the statistics bureau showed on Friday.

  • SINGAPORE, Feb 5- Crude oil futures held steady in lacklustre trading on Friday as Asian liquidity faded ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday across large parts of the region. International benchmark Brent crude futures were trading at $34.52 per barrel at 0304 GMT, up 6 cents from their last settlement. BMI Research, a unit of rating agency Fitch Group, said on...

  • NEW YORK, Feb 4- A suspended deputy United Nations ambassador from the Dominican Republic cannot claim diplomatic immunity to avoid U.S. charges that he participated in a vast bribery scheme, a U.S. judge ruled on Thursday. District Judge Vernon Broderick in Manhattan ruled that as a naturalized U.S. citizen, neither treaty obligations nor federal law entitled...

  • TOKYO, Feb 5- Asian equities were subdued on Friday and the dollar wobbled ahead of the closely watched U.S. jobs report, which could provide clues on the Federal Reserve's monetary policy outlook. Shanghai shares crept up 0.1 percent, South Korea's KOSPI shed 0.1 percent and Australian shares lost 0.7 percent. "The biggest concern for the Japanese market now is...

  • NEW YORK, Feb 4- Viacom Inc's board of directors named Chief Executive Officer Philippe Dauman as executive chairman, replacing majority owner Sumner Redstone, overriding calls for an independent board chief from Redstone's daughter, who voted against Dauman. Viacom announced on Thursday that the ailing 92- year-old Redstone was becoming chairman...

  • *Gou to hold news conference in Osaka at 0600 GMT. TAIPEI/ TOKYO, Feb 5- Foxconn Chief Executive Officer Terry Gou is in Osaka to meet executives of Japan's Sharp Corp, a Sharp spokesman said, one day after the struggling electronics maker said it was focusing on the Taiwan firm's takeover bid over a rival offer from a Japanese state-backed fund.

  • JAKARTA, Feb 5- Indonesia's economy grew 5.04 percent from a year earlier in the final quarter of 2015, faster than market expectation, as government spending countered weak exports and consumption. The growth pace in October-December was also faster than in the third quarter, which the statistics bureau revised slightly up to 4.74 percent.

  • Feb 4- State Street Corp is nearing a deal to acquire General Electric Co's $115 billion asset management business, according to people familiar with the matter, as the U.S. industrial conglomerate continues to shed unloved assets. State Street, a Boston- based asset manager, has prevailed over other bidders, including Goldman Sachs Group Inc, for the business, and...

  • *Yum's China sales drop for first time in 2015. *China same-store sales improving for both brands. SHANGHAI, Feb 5- Yum Brands Inc, the home of KFC and Pizza Hut, is falling behind rival McDonald's Corp as the pair battle to revive flagging sales in China- a headache for Yum as it looks to spin off operations in its biggest market.