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  • Jan 7- Monsanto Co, the world's largest seed company, said on Wednesday profits dropped 34 percent in the first quarter compared to a year ago, due in part to lower planted corn acres in South America and a shift in timing of some sales. Monsanto, known for its genetically engineered corn, soybeans and other crops as well as the popular Roundup herbicide, said net sales...

  • WASHINGTON, Jan 7- The U.S. trade deficit fell to an 11- month low in November as declining crude oil prices curbed the import bill, eclipsing a drop in exports that could be related to a labor dispute at one of the nation's key ports. The Commerce Department said on Wednesday the trade gap narrowed 7.7 percent to $39 billion, the smallest since December 2013.

  • *McDonald's Japan expecting first annual loss in 11 years. TOKYO, Jan 7- McDonald's Japan has apologized to customers and vowed to ensure product safety after objects including a tooth and plastic were found in its food, the latest trouble for a fast-food chain hit by sliding sales and a shortage of french fries. McDonald's Japan brought in Chief Executive Sarah...

  • Jan 7- Alkermes Plc said its experimental drug to treat schizophrenia met the main goal in a mid-stage trial, sending the company's shares up 5 percent in premarket trading. ALKS 3831 was as effective as olanzapine and also addressed the issue of weight gain in patients treated with olanzapine, Alkermes said. Alkermes said it planned to meet with the U.S. Food and...

  • Home@ LONDON, Jan 7- A new year it may be but the London Metal Exchange will spend a large part of it grappling with the same old problems afflicting its global warehousing system. Waiting times to remove metal from log-jammed locations will have flexed out again over the course of December, given last month's large cancellations of aluminium at the Dutch port of...

  • NEW YORK, Jan 7- U.S. private employers added 241,000 jobs in December, beating the median forecasts of analysts, a report by a payrolls processor showed on Wednesday. The ADP figures come ahead of the U.S. Labor Department's more comprehensive nonfarm payrolls report on Friday, which includes both public and private sector employment. The unemployment rate is...

  • BERLIN, Jan 7- German government websites including Chancellor Angela Merkel's page were hacked on Wednesday in a cyber attack claimed by a group demanding that Berlin sever official ties with the Ukrainian government. 'Berkut' is a reference to the riot squads used by the government of Ukraine's former pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovich, who was ousted...

  • Jan 7- Eli Lilly and Co, which has been battered in the past three years by competition from generics, forecast 2015 revenue shy of Wall Street expectations. The drugmaker expects sales of $20.3 billion to $20.8 billion for the year, it said on Wednesday. The company, which is betting on its rejuvenated pipeline of drugs particularly for diabetes, oncology and...

  • Jan 7- Zafgen Inc said a mid-stage study showed its experimental drug reduced weight in patients obese due to damage to a part of the brain. Vivus Inc's Qsymia, Arena Pharmaceuticals Inc's Belviq and Orexigen Therapeutics Inc's Contrave appear to work by signaling the brain, but their exact mechanism of action is unknown. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration...

  • US STOCKS-Futures higher after 5-day slide; ADP on tap Wednesday, 7 Jan 2015 | 7:47 AM ET

    *J.C. Penney climbs in premarket after sales results. NEW YORK, Jan 7- U.S. stock index futures rose on Wednesday, putting Wall Street on track to bounce from a five-day slide, ahead of data on the labor market and the minutes from the most recent meeting of the U.S. *Investors will scan the minutes from the Federal Open Market Committee's Dec. 16-17 meeting at 2:00 p.m....

  • LONDON, Jan 7- Unless prices recover, U.S. oil production will start falling before the end of 2015 as new drilling is insufficient to replace declining output from wells completed in 2013 and 2014.. Decline curves for typical shale wells in the Bakken, the Permian Basin and the Eagle Ford are all widely available on the internet, as are basic data on the number of...

  • Jan 7- Satellite radio service Sirius XM Holdings said it would beat its 2014 revenue forecast of $4.15 billion after net subscriber additions exceeded expectations. The company reported about 1.8 million net subscriber additions for the year, above its increased forecast of 1.5 million. Sirius also forecast revenue of about $4.4 billion in 2015 and net...

  • LONDON, Jan 7- Strong demand for premium foods and clothing helped British grocer J Sainsbury to beat Christmas sales forecasts, though it continued to lose market share to discounters and warned of another tough year for mainstream supermarkets. The company, which trails troubled market leader Tesco and Wal-Mart Stores' Asda by annual sales, said on Wednesday...

  • *ECB seen announcing government bond buying on Jan 22. BRUSSELS, Jan 7- Euro zone inflation turned negative in December for the first time since 2009, with cheap oil driving a bigger than expected decline that may prompt the European Central Bank to start printing money. "It's probably the figure they needed," said Peter Vanden Houte, chief economist at ING.

  • BERLIN, Jan 7- German government websites including Chancellor Angela Merkel's page have been attacked, rendering them inaccessible at times since 1000 am, a spokesman said on Wednesday.

  • Jan 7- Alkermes Plc said its experimental drug to treat schizophrenia met the main goal in a mid-stage trial. The drug, codenamed ALKS 3831, is a combination of samidorphan and the antipsychotic drug, olanzapine. ALKS 3831 was as effective as olanzapine and also addressed the issue of weight gain in patients treated with olanzapine, Alkermes said.

  • Zafgen obesity drug found successful in mid-stage study Wednesday, 7 Jan 2015 | 7:18 AM ET

    Jan 7- Zafgen Inc said its experimental drug was successful in reducing weight in patients obese due to damage to a part of the brain, in a mid-stage study. The drug, beloranib, was tested against a placebo in 14 adults with medically induced obesity, resulting from damage to the hypothalamus following surgery to remove a kind of brain tumor. Affected patients are...

  • *Brent oil breaks below $50. LONDON, Jan 7- The euro hit a nine-year trough and bond yields in several euro zone countries reached record lows on Wednesday, as tumbling oil prices tipped inflation into negative territory for the first time since 2009, raising the prospect of outright deflation. Brent crude oil futures fell below $50 a barrel on Wednesday for the...

  • Aveo Oncology to cut two-thirds of workforce Wednesday, 7 Jan 2015 | 7:05 AM ET

    Jan 7- Aveo Oncology said its plans to cut two-thirds of its workforce, or 40 positions, as a part of a restructuring that includes the departure of Chief Scientific Officer Jeno Gyuris.

  • *U.S. shale oil, OPEC production remain high. LONDON, Jan 7- Brent crude oil recovered slightly after falling below $50 a barrel for the first time since May 2009 on Wednesday, as traders re-assessed their books after a sharp slide since the start of the year on a growing supply glut and weak global demand. Prices have lost around 55 percent since their peak above $115...