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  • Shell's bid for BG boosts Britain's FTSE Wednesday, 8 Apr 2015 | 7:29 AM ET

    LONDON, April 8- Royal Dutch Shell's $70 billion bid for energy firm BG Group lifted Britain's top share index on Wednesday, helping it outperform its continental peers. The FTSE 100 was up 0.5 percent at 6,998.71 points by 1103 GMT, while Germany's DAX and France's CAC eased. "With BG Group, Shell gets exposure to Brazil's vast Santos Basin reserves, and further...

  • Rite Aid quarterly same-store sales rise 4.5 pct Wednesday, 8 Apr 2015 | 7:24 AM ET

    April 8- Drugstore chain operator Rite Aid Corp's quarterly revenue rose 3.8 percent, helped by strong prescription sales that drove better-than-expected same-store sales growth. Rite Aid's shares rose 2.9 percent to $8.95 in premarket trading on Wednesday. The latest quarter included an income tax benefit of $1.72 billion, or $1.67 per share, Rite Aid said.

  • MOSCOW, April 8- Russia's Economy Ministry has prepared a package of proposals related Russia's ban on most Western food for tomorrow's meeting of Greek and Russian officials in Moscow, Economy Minister Alexei Ulyukayev told reporters on Wednesday.

  • "We look for companies that have solid employee rankings and want to buy companies that have improvements in employee opinions," said Paul Ebner, a portfolio manager and member of BlackRock's scientific active equity group, a team of quantitative managers. At BlackRock, which has more than $4.65 trillion in assets, the company's 77- member quantitative team...

  • DETROIT, April 8- Tesla Motors Inc began taking orders on Wednesday for a new base version of its Model S electric sedan that is $5,000 more expensive than its predecessor, but offers better performance, longer range and more features, including all-wheel drive. The Model S 70 D gets "a slight price increase, but it's a huge value increase," Tesla's chief executive,...

  • SAN FRANCISCO, April 8- Alibaba Group Holding Ltd has forged a deal to allow online shopping startup Bigcommerce's 70,000- plus clients to more easily buy from top-ranked Chinese suppliers and manufacturers on Alibaba.com. The tie-up helps round off Bigcommerce's services, a startup which helps clients from Gibson Guitars to Ubisoft Entertainment SA...

  • *Aldi overtakes Waitrose to become Britain's No.6 grocer. LONDON, April 8- Sales at Britain's biggest retailer Tesco edged higher over the last three months, industry data showed on Wednesday, adding to signs of a tentative recovery in the supermarket's fortunes under its new boss. Market share figures from researchers Kantar Worldpanel also showed...

  • *Manulife expects deal to be accretive to EPS in 2017. Manulife expects the agreement to be accretive to core earnings per share in 2017 and the initial payment is expected to reduce Manulife's regulatory capital ratio by 10 points. Aviva was among the players competing for the new partnership that also included AIA Group Ltd and Prudential plc.

  • GRAINS-Soybeans and corn rise ahead of USDA report Wednesday, 8 Apr 2015 | 6:36 AM ET

    Wheat fell in pre- USDA report positioning after closing lower on Tuesday. "The soybean and corn markets are seeing a limited recovery today following their recent price falls as some rebalancing is taking place ahead of the USDA world supply and demand report on Thursday," said Frank Rijkers, agrifood economist at ABN AMRO Bank. Analysts expect the USDA's report...

  • Scores of flights halted by French air control strike Wednesday, 8 Apr 2015 | 6:32 AM ET

    PARIS, April 8- Airlines canceled scores of flights in and out of France on Wednesday because of a two-day stoppage by air traffic controllers upset over work conditions and plans to raise their retirement age to 59 from 57.. Budget airline easyJet said it was canceling 118 flights to and from France on April 8 and apologized to passengers for a strike "outside of...

  • *Iran wants latest technology, equipment to get fields going. BEIJING, April 8- Iran hopes to resolve differences with Chinese energy companies on oil and gas projects in the Islamic republic, as Tehran wants to be ready to raise output quickly after a potential lifting of sanctions this year, Iranian oil officials said on Wednesday. The officials are in China this...

  • BEIJING, April 8- Three Chinese citizens are taking China's Ministry of Agriculture to court in a bid to make public a toxicology report supporting the approval of Monsanto's popular weedkiller, Roundup, 27 years ago. The case, a rare example of a lawsuit by private citizens against the Chinese government, comes amid renewed attention on glyphosate, the key...

  • LONDON, April 8- Lead prices on Wednesday touched the strongest levels in 2-1/ 2 months as inventories eroded while nickel in London bounced back from sharp falls in the previous session. "Stocks of lead are quite low and right through this cycle they've been low," said Stephen Briggs, metals strategist at BNP Paribas in London. Three-month LME lead gained 0.3...

  • BERLIN, April 8- Germany has no reason to think that Athens has softened its stance towards sanctions imposed by the EU on Russia over the Ukraine crisis, a foreign ministry spokeswoman said on Wednesday when Greece's prime minister was due to visit Vladimir Putin.

  • SOFIA, April 8- U.S. power companies AES and ContourGlobal agreed to cut the price of electricity they sell to Bulgaria's public power provider NEK on Wednesday, in exchange for NEK making about 700 million levs in late payments by July. "This is our contribution for the government's efforts to stabilise the energy sector," said Julian Nebreda, AES Corp.' s President...

  • LONDON, April 8- Gold edged higher on Wednesday, holding above $1,200 an ounce as the dollar retreated and expectations grew that the Federal Reserve could delay an anticipated U.S. rate rise to next year. Spot gold was up 0.1 percent at $1,208.71 an ounce by 0918 GMT. "We really need to break at least through the $1,220/ $1,225 area, or close above the 200- day moving...

  • SHANGHAI, April 8- Chinese funds are snapping up shares in Hong Kong, betting that a link-up between the Shenzhen and Hong Kong stock exchanges, and easier access for institutional investors, will yield quick double-digit or even triple-digit arbitrage profits. On Wednesday, Chinese investors used the entire 10.5 billion yuan daily investment quota for...

  • *BOJ maintains base money target as widely expected. TOKYO, April 8- The Bank of Japan maintained its massive stimulus program on Wednesday and brushed aside speculation of near-term policy easing, even as inflation ground to a halt and growth stalled two years into its radical experiment to revive the economy. After the bank's widely expected decision to leave...

  • *Greek PM Tsipras in Moscow. LONDON, April 8- Global stocks remained upbeat on Wednesday as a $70 billion mega-deal in the European oil and gas sector stoked the merger and acquisition fever that has gripped investors this week. Shares in BG Group rose as much as 42 percent in early trade after Royal Dutch Shell agreed to pay that amount for its smaller rival, making...

  • *Russia turns more to Asia as sanctions bite. *Russia puts aside wariness over Chinese investment. Last September, President Vladimir Putin, who has been seeking new markets in Asia for Russian energy exports to replace traditional customers in Europe, announced that he would welcome Chinese investment in Vankor, a vast new oil field in remote eastern Siberia...