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  • LAUNCESTON, Australia, Dec 11- If you were looking for a sign that coal prices have finally bottomed out, then the ramping up of merger and acquisition activity is often a good indicator. In the past few days, a flurry of announcements have hit the headlines, including Anglo American's proposed sale of coal assets in Australia and South Africa, and Peabody Energy and...

  • Dec 10- The New York banking regulator is investigating if Deutsche Bank and Barclays Plc used algorithms on their trading platforms to manipulate foreign exchange rates, a source with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters. Benjamin Lawsky, the head of New York's Department of Financial Services, has ordered a monitor to be installed at Deutsche Bank and...

  • SINGAPORE/ SYDNEY, Dec 11- The dollar inched higher versus the yen on Thursday, getting some respite after falling roughly 3 percent in the past three days as the market unwound stretched positions ahead of the year-end. It touched a two-week low near 117.45 yen earlier on Thursday but later stabilised and last traded at 118.09 yen, up 0.2 percent on the day.

  • JGBs edge up as stocks dip, yields touch fresh lows Wednesday, 10 Dec 2014 | 11:08 PM ET

    TOKYO, Dec 11- Japanese government bond prices inched higher on Thursday, sending some yields to fresh 20- month lows, as they took their cues from sagging stocks. Japan's key gauge of capital spending fell for the first time in five months in October in a sign that business investment may be losing momentum. That was its lowest level since early April 2013, in the...

  • BEIJING, Dec 11- Brent crude ticked higher on Thursday but remained below $65 per barrel, and not far above five-year lows hit in the previous session, with the market's bearish tone largely intact. Brent crude edged up 51 cents to $64.75 by 0325 GMT, a little more than a dollar away from the previous session's low of $63.56- the weakest since July 2009.

  • SHANGHAI, Dec 11- The People's Bank of China is easing enforcement of quotas and loan-to-deposit ratios to encourage banks to quicken lending as the economy slows, sources with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters. It also has set a target of 10 trillion yuan in total loans for 2014, the sources said. Analysts had expected further support measures as...

  • NEW YORK, Dec 10- Arab Bank Plc will face a trial in May to determine how much it owes for providing material support to Hamas in three of two dozen attacks attributed to the Islamic militant group in Israel and the Palestinian territories, according to a court order. The cases will be the first to have damages assessed after a federal jury in September found Arab...

  • -An administrative law judge found Walmart threatened employees trying to organize workers at two stores in California, in a victory for workers' rights groups challenging labor practices at the retail giant. Geoffrey Carter, National Labor Relations Board Administrative law judge in Washington, D.C., told the company to stop applying pressure on employees...

  • WELLINGTON, Dec 11- New Zealand's central bank held its benchmark rate steady on Thursday, and struck a relatively hawkish policy tone by signalling modest rate rises over time that propelled the local dollar higher. The Reserve Bank of New Zealand said that while inflation was low, the economy was growing strongly and expected to do so for the next two years.

  • TOKYO, Dec 11- Asian stocks fell on Thursday as falling oil prices continued to feed into global growth concerns, while the dollar struggled against peers such as the yen and euro after a further drop in U.S. bond yields. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down 0.3 percent as another large decline in oil prices took a heavy toll on energy...

  • CHICAGO, Dec 10- Chicago opened a new front in the war on ridesharing services like Uber on Wednesday, approving a plan to sponsor an app for riders to hail local cabs. A union that has expanded into cab drivers and organized Chicago this year pushed hard for the package, which had the support of Mayor Rahm Emanuel. Uber declined to comment directly on the Chicago...

  • TOKYO, Dec 11- Japan's Nikkei share average is set for a third day of losses on Thursday, hitting a more than three-week low after oil prices slumped, while a strong yen and poor machinery data dampened risk taking. Traders say that falling oil prices are positive for most advanced economies such as the United States and Japan as they are importers of oil, but weak oil...

  • METALS-Dollar drop eases pressure on metals Wednesday, 10 Dec 2014 | 9:09 PM ET

    SYDNEY, Dec 11- Metals edged higher on Thursday as the dollar weakened against an index of currencies on year-end positioning and risk-aversion triggered by steep losses in oil. *Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange had edged up 0.2 percent to $6,426 a tonne by 0138 GMT, after falling 1 percent in the previous session. *The most-traded February copper...

  • It spent $5.7 billion for the rights to some injectable wrinkle treatments of Valeant Pharmaceuticals and for L'Oreal's share of a dermatology joint venture the two operated. Nestle is also spending about $350 million on dermatology research and development this year, said Humberto Antunes, chief executive of Nestle Skin Care. The first of the new research...

  • LIMA, Dec 10- The United States on Wednesday played down prospects for a wide-ranging deal with India to curb greenhouse gas emissions next year along the lines of a plan agreed to with China last month. "We don't have that kind of process going on with India," U.S. climate envoy Todd Stern told a news conference during Dec. 1-12 talks among 190 nations in Lima on ways to...

  • China's yuan opens stronger thanks to c.bank support Wednesday, 10 Dec 2014 | 8:45 PM ET

    BEIJING, Dec 11- China's yuan opened stronger against the dollar on Thursday as the central bank set a higher official guidance rate for the fifth straight day. The opening trade on the yuan was 6.17, up 0.11 percent from the previous day's close. The People's Bank of China set the midpoint rate at 6.1153 per dollar prior to market open, the highest since February and...

  • S.Korea c.bank holds interest rates steady for 2nd mth Wednesday, 10 Dec 2014 | 8:10 PM ET

    SEOUL, Dec 11- South Korea's central bank kept interest rates unchanged for a second straight month on Thursday, as expected, while observing the effects from its two rate cuts this year and watching external conditions. The Bank of Korea's monetary policy committee held its base rate steady at 2.00 percent, a media official said without elaborating.

  • The studio said Wednesday only still photographers and a Sony video team will document arrivals at the event, stopping reporters from asking Seth Rogen and James Franco about a massive cyber attack at Sony that some speculate is linked to the film. A spokeswoman for Sony, a unit of Japan's Sony Corp, could not immediately be reached for comment on why press access...

  • Dec 10- Walgreen Co said Chief Executive Greg Wasson would retire and hand the reins on an interim basis to the head of Alliance Boots Holdings Ltd, a move that follows a series of events that has tested investor confidence in the U.S. drugstore chain. Walgreen said Wasson would step down shortly after it completes the purchase of the 55 percent it does not already...

  • SYDNEY, Dec 11- Global aluminium premiums are expected to reach fresh record highs by mid-2015 on a supply deficit in the United States and Europe, a Reuters survey showed. "The world, excluding China, will continue to be in short supply due to shut downs, production curtailments and strong demand in South America and North America," said one respondent.