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  • BEIJING, May 9- The yuan is moving closer to its equilibrium level, China's foreign exchange regulator said on Friday as it forecast more volatility in the country's capital flows.

  • MADRID, May 9- Spain's Telefonica set the tone for another difficult year as it missed first-quarter earnings forecasts, hit by falling sales in Europe, weaker currencies in Latin America and the sale of its Czech unit last year.

  • BERLIN, May 9- German growth could be reduced by up to 0.9 percentage points this year and 0.3 points in 2015 if the EU imposes tougher economic sanctions on Russia for its actions in Ukraine, a German magazine reported.

  • *Area 7 block falls in disputed Reed Bank area of South China Sea. MANILA, May 9- The Philippines on Friday launched a tender for exploration rights in 11 oil and gas blocks, including one in a disputed area of the South China Sea that is likely to fuel further tension with China.

  • LONDON, May 9- Lower-rated euro zone bond yields fell to fresh record lows and the common currency slid further on Friday as investors positioned for more monetary stimulus from the European Central Bank.

  • *Likely gainers: Kalyani Steels and JSW Steel. *Likely losers: Sesa Sterlite and Essel Mining. NEW DELHI, May 9- When Indian prime ministerial hopeful Narendra Modi asked at an election rally if anyone knew of a country that exported wheat but imported bread, steelmakers joined his followers to cheer.

  • HONG KONG, May 9- Leading eye glass makers operating in China have cut prices by as much as 30 percent following an investigation by the country's price regulator, the official Securities Times newspaper reported on Friday.

  • *Slovenia narrowly dodged bailout, risks remain. LJUBLJANA, May 9- Slovenia's outgoing prime minister Alenka Bratusek has a fighting chance of doing well enough in a snap election to allow her to return to power and implement the economic rescue plan that markets believe is needed to stave off a bailout.

  • BEIJING, May 9- Hong Kong shares finished up slightly on Friday, with volatility in telecoms and a sell-off in Great Wall Motors leaving the Hang Seng 1.8 percent lower on the week. The China Enterprises Index of the leading offshore Chinese listings in Hong Kong was down 0.5 percent, and 1.2 percent lower on the week.

  • Telefonica tumbles as European shares slip back Friday, 9 May 2014 | 4:05 AM ET

    *Telefonica falls after Q1 profits miss forecasts. LONDON, May 9- European shares slipped back on Friday as disappointing business updates from leading companies such as telecoms operator Telefonica sobered the mood after a rally on the previous day.

  • *Ukraine rebels ignore Putin call to delay self-rule vote. LONDON, May 9- Brent crude rose above $108 per barrel on Friday, supported by tension in Ukraine and limited supply from Libya, where a recent deal to reopen oil export terminals seemed unlikely to go ahead.

  • LONDON, May 9- The euro slid further in early trade in Europe on Friday after strong words from European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi that halted its march this year to a 2-1/ 2 year high.

  • LONDON, May 9- Britain's Co-operative Group will cede more control of the Co-op Bank following the bank's latest fundraising, with its stake expected to fall to 20 percent, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.

  • May 9- Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc, Japan's biggest lender, is considering bidding for the corporate trust arm of Bank of New York Mellon Corp, Bloomberg reported on Friday citing unidentified people with knowledge of the matter. Officials at BNY Mellon were not immediately available for comment outside regular U.S. business hours.

  • BEIJING, May 9- China shares closed down on Friday on falling property stocks and a sell-off in Great Wall Motor shares, leaving the two main indexes in negative territory for the fourth straight week. The CSI300 of the leading Shanghai and Shenzhen A-share listings declined 0.1 percent.

  • LONDON, May 9- European stocks edged lower on Friday as disappointing updates from blue chips such as Spanish telecoms operator Telefonica sobered the mood after a market rally on the previous day. Shares in heavyweight Telefonica fell 1 percent as the company missed market expectations with a 23 percent fall in net profit.

  • BERLIN, May 9- France's economic woes are the result of poor policy choices at home and Paris should stop blaming its problems on the strength of the euro, Jean-Claude Juncker, the centre-right candidate for European Commission president, told Reuters.

  • *Ukraine rebels ignore Putin call to delay self-rule vote. SINGAPORE, May 9- Brent crude held steady above $108 per barrel on Friday, supported by renewed tension in Ukraine and continued limited supply from Libya, but was on track for a second weekly loss.

  • SYDNEY, May 9- Mining giant Vale said it has suspended 80 percent of its nickel production in New Caledonia due to an effluent spill, and plans to have a full shutdown later on Friday, sending nickel prices up nearly 6 percent. New Caledonia is on a public holiday on Friday.

  • BRUSSELS, May 9- ArcelorMittal, the world's largest steelmaker, trimmed its forecast for global steel use on Friday due to a more pronounced slowdown in China and a decline in Russia, though it retained optimism about its core European and U.S. markets.