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  • ZURICH, Jan 21- Swiss chocolate maker Barry Callebaut warned on Wednesday the strong Swiss franc could hit its results, after sales revenue rose 15.1 percent in the quarter to November helped by higher cocoa bean prices. Barry Callebaut said it conducted 99 percent of its business outside of Switzerland so had limited operational exposure to the surging franc,...

  • LONDON, Jan 21- Britain's vast foreign exchange markets need more regulation in the wake of a currency rate-fixing scandal that landed global banks with heavy fines last year, a lawyer who investigated the case said on Wednesday. Anthony Grabiner, speaking to British lawmakers, said care should be taken not to undermine the effectiveness of London as a centre...

  • SEATTLE, Jan 21- Microsoft Corp said on Wednesday the upcoming Windows 10 operating system will be offered as a free upgrade to users of the most recent versions of Windows and Windows Phone software. The announcement by Terry Myerson, who runs Microsoft's operating systems group, is a marked change for the company, which has charged for new versions of Windows,...

  • DAVOS, Switzerland, Jan 21- Takeda Pharmaceutical, Japan's largest drugmaker, is ready to look at doing deals now that it has refocused operations, its incoming chief executive said on Wednesday. "We don't want to be passive and we don't want to watch the train passing," he told Reuters on the fringes of the World Economic Forum in Davos. As COO, Weber has overseen a...

  • US STOCKS-Wall St rises on report of ECB action; IBM falls Wednesday, 21 Jan 2015 | 12:25 PM ET

    *IBM shares fall after results, Netflix rallies. NEW YORK, Jan 21- U.S. stocks rose in a volatile session on Wednesday on reports that new stimulative measures would be announced by the European Central Bank at its meeting tomorrow, though a tepid outlook from IBM limited the Dow's gains. "The timing and duration of bond purchases is just as important as the actual...

  • But with doubts about whether Greece will stick to its EU, ECB and IMF-prescribed austerity policies after a cliff-hanger election on Sunday, some at the central bank would prefer not to include Greek bonds. For the top rating agencies, Standard and Poor's, Moody's, Fitch and DBRS, all of which upgraded Greece last year, any exclusion from ECB buying would pose a...

  • ZURICH, Jan 21- Switzerland's central bank said on Wednesday that it agreed with the People's Bank of China to establish clearing arrangements in Switzerland for renminbi trading and extend a pilot scheme for Swiss investors. Alongside the pact, the PBOC will extend a pilot scheme for foreign investors to Switzerland with a quota of up to 50 billion yuan.

  • Northern Trust beats Street 4Q forecasts Wednesday, 21 Jan 2015 | 12:17 PM ET

    Northern Trust on Wednesday reported fourth-quarter profit of $244 million.

  • In an interview with Reuters, John Wojick, Boeing's vice president for global sales& marketing, echoed a consensus among participants at a Dublin finance gathering that the slide in oil prices would not significantly undermine new jet demand. Delegates at this week's Airline Economics conference said the drop in oil could reduce the premium Boeing and rival...

  • ASML shares hit record after topping forecasts Wednesday, 21 Jan 2015 | 12:11 PM ET
    Employees inspect semiconductor chips on the production line at the Hana Microelectronics plant at the Hi-Tech Industrial Estate in Thailand.

    ASML Holding reported forecast-beating results on the back of stronger-than-expected demand from memory chip makers, sending its shares to a new high.

  • Fifth Third tops Street 4Q forecasts Wednesday, 21 Jan 2015 | 12:06 PM ET
    Earnings report

    Fifth Third Bancorp on Wednesday reported fourth-quarter net income of $385 million.

  • LONDON, Jan 21- Britain's vast foreign exchange markets need more regulation in the wake of a currency rate-fixing scandal that landed global banks with heavy fines last year, a lawyer who investigated the case said on Wednesday. Anthony Grabiner, speaking to British lawmakers, said care should be taken not to undermine the effectiveness of London as a centre...

  • WASHINGTON, Jan 21- The U.S. International Trade Commission said on Wednesday imports of solar products from China and Taiwan injure U.S. producers, clearing the final hurdle for import duties on the goods. The commission voted 5-0 against China and 4-1 against Taiwan. Mukesh Dulani, U.S. president of SolarWorld, hailed the ruling.

  • WASHINGTON, Jan 21- The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday appeared torn as it weighed a major civil rights case that could narrow the scope of discrimination claims made under the landmark Fair Housing Act. The case concerns whether Texas violated the Fair Housing Act by disproportionately awarding low-income housing tax credits to developers who own...

  • IBM outlook drags on Wall Street gains. *Gold above $1,300 for first time since August. NEW YORK, Jan 21- European and U.S. equities rose on Wednesday, lifted by news reports that the European Central Bank will announce a massive bond-buying program to boost the euro zone's flagging economy.

  • WASHINGTON, Jan 21- U.S. cities will see strong job growth this year, but only about half will return to the employment peaks reached before the recession began more than seven years ago, according to an economic report released by the U.S. Conference of Mayors on Wednesday. "You see a lot of the municipalities with more than 50 percent of the households under $50,000.

  • DAVOS, Switzerland, Jan 21- The International Monetary Fund will support a bigger, longer-term funding plan for Ukraine than its current programme in return for agreed structural economic and fiscal reforms, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said on Wednesday. Speaking after talks with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, who made the request,...

  • U.S. top court divided over housing discrimination case Wednesday, 21 Jan 2015 | 11:32 AM ET

    WASHINGTON, Jan 21- The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday appeared torn as it weighed whether to narrow the scope of discrimination claims made under the landmark Fair Housing Act.

  • US Bancorp tops Street 4Q forecasts Wednesday, 21 Jan 2015 | 11:30 AM ET
    Corporate earnings balance sheet

    U.S. Bancorp on Wednesday reported fourth-quarter earnings of $1.49 billion.

  • SUPREME COURT APPEARS CLOSELY DIVIDED ON WHETHER TO NARROW SCOPE OF LANDMARK FAIR HOUSING LAW.