MEXICO CITY, May 24- A healthy boost in foreign direct investment in the first quarter underscored confidence in Latin America's No. 2 economy even as investment flows into the country's stocks and bonds moderated, central bank data showed on Friday.» Read More
*Algeria says at least 11 militants dead, only 2 Algerian. Western leaders whose compatriots were being held did little to disguise their irritation at being kept in the dark by Algeria before the raid- and over its bloody outcome.
LONDON, Jan 18- Britain has not received word from Algeria that the hostage crisis in Algeria has ended, a diplomatic source said on Friday. "The situation is still really fluid on the ground. We have no information from the Algerian authorities that it's over, "the source said.
BAGHDAD, Jan 18- Iraq's Kurdistan has defended its oil policy with foreign companies and its crude trade barter with Turkey as constitutional, and rejected a initial deal between Baghdad and BP to develop an oilfield in the disputed city of Kirkuk.
LONDON, Jan 18- European shares edged higher on Friday, closing in on multi-month highs after stronger-than-expected Chinese data boosted confidence of a revival in the global economy. "We've got good numbers out of China, we had some good number out of U.S. yesterday... The general sentiment is pretty good, "said Neil Marsh, strategist at Newedge.
Jan 18- Japanese firms supply more than a third of the parts used in Boeing Co's 787 Dreamliner passenger jet, which has been grounded worldwide for checks focused on lithium-ion batteries in the mainly carbon-composite plane. For a related story on Boeing's ties to Japan. *Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd- wings.
TOKYO, Jan 18- Decades of deep business ties between Boeing Co and Japan and the thousands of jobs that depend on them mean Japan will likely keep rewarding U.S. manufacturers with the bulk of its aviation spending. Boeing's 80 percent share of commercial airline sales in Japan is unrivalled.
SINGAPORE, Jan 18- Brent crude held above $111 per barrel on Friday, supported by a rebound in China's growth and encouraging data from the United States, following a steep jump in the previous session triggered partly by an Algerian crisis. Front-month Brent added 28 cents to stand at $111.38 a barrel by 0713 GMT, extending Thursday's jump of $1.42.
SINGAPORE/ SYDNEY, Jan 18- The yen hit a 2-1/ 2 year low against the dollar on Friday as markets positioned for the Bank of Japan to take bold action to tackle deflation at a policy-setting meeting early next week.
TOKYO, Jan 18- Japanese government bonds mostly slipped on Friday as a weaker yen lifted the stock market, while expectations of further policy easing by the Bank of Japan next week lifted shorter maturities. The 10- year JGB yield rose 2 basis points to 0.750 percent, moving away from Thursday's intraday low of 0.730 percent, its lowest since Dec. 17.
The European Central Bank should keep monetary policy easy and perhaps try to lower borrowing costs further to help the euro zone's struggling economy, the head of the International Monetary Fund said on Thursday.
*Credit Suisse upgrades Japan on short-term. Exporters led the pack, with Toyota Motor Corp adding 2.1 percent, Honda Motor Co up 3.2 percent and Panasonic Corp climbing 5.3 percent.
HONG KONG, Jan 18- Mainland Chinese shares posted their first gain in three days on Friday, led by strength in growth-sensitive sectors after data showed the world's second-largest economy grew by a slightly better-than-expected 7.9 percent in the fourth quarter.
TOKYO, Jan 18- Asian shares advanced on Friday as encouraging data from the United States and China boosted prospects for the global economy, while the yen hit new lows ahead of next week's Bank of Japan meeting. Both the Tokyo and Hong Kong stock markets surged to multi-month highs on the upbeat sentiment.
TOKYO, Jan 18- Japan's Nikkei share average surged 2.9 percent on Friday as exporters gained on expectations of aggressive easing from the central bank next week, which would put more downward pressure on the yen. This week was the 10th straight in which the Nikkei has risen.
NEW YORK/ LONDON, Jan 18- Global prices for liquefied natural gas are rising toward record highs this year as increasing demand runs up against stuttering supply, threatening to drive up fuel costs in some of the world's biggest economies.
*Household formation lifting off recession troughs. *Improving jobs picture behind rise. WASHINGTON, Jan 18- Americans are feeling increasingly confident in the future and more and more are striking out to set up their own homes, a move that is helping propel the housing recovery.
The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits fell to a five-year low last week, though the Labor Department said the drop stemmed largely from seasonal factors. The Commerce Department said home builders broke ground at an annualized rate of 954,000 units in December, the fastest monthly pace in four years.
DETROIT, Jan 18- Honda Motor Co said it is recalling 777,000 late-model Pilot and Odyssey vehicles in the United States and Canada due to a problem with the deployment of driver's side airbags, American Honda said on Friday. No crashes or injuries have been reported in relation to the issue, Honda said.
*Move ends talks, puts offer to vote as Boeing faces 787 safety review. *Boeing agrees to extend some terms of expired contract for 4 years.
BRUSSELS, Jan 18- A group of euro zone countries, led by Germany and France, looks set for a green light next week to push ahead with a tax on financial transactions, a step politicians hope will please voters but which critics have warned could backfire.