*Libya restarts oil exports from biggest port. "This is a figure which indicates that growth is likely to be reasonably moderate and any upside to current expectations about China will be possibly muted," said Ric Spooner, chief analyst at CMC Markets in Sydney.» Read More
ZURICH, April 3- Novartis has taken India's Biocon to court for infringing the patent on its diabetes drug Galvus, the Swiss drugmaker said in a statement on Thursday. In a hearing that took place on March 28, the Delhi court ordered that Biocon cannot manufacture, sell or export vildagliptin until the next court hearing, Novartis said in an emailed statement.
BRITAIN SAYS REVIEW OF PUBLIC HEALTH EVIDENCE SHOWS PLAIN STANDARDISED TOBACCO PACKAGING WOULD BE VERY LIKELY TO IMPROVE PUBLIC HEALTH.
*Copper premiums fall $5 to $75- $95. Three month aluminium on the London Metal Exchange dipped 0.1 percent to $1,827.75 a tonne by 1009 GMT after touching a peak of $1,838.50, the highest since Dec. 30.
DUBAI, April 3- Investment Corp of Dubai, the emirate's sovereign wealth fund, has bought a stake in global hotel management firm Kerzner International from investors including the family of South African casino tycoon Sol Kerzner. Kerzner International, originally founded by Sol Kerzner, manages the Atlantis and One& Only resort chains.
LONDON, April 3- Euro zone businesses started 2014 with their best quarter in three years, but buoyant growth came at a cost as they slashed prices to drum up trade, which could further stoke deflation fears.
SEOUL, April 3- South Korea should shift away from a quota system on rice imports to ease pressure from the World Trade Organisation to open its markets for the grain, agricultural industry and government officials in the country said on Thursday.
LONDON, April 3- Gold edged down on Thursday, as investors marked time ahead of the European Central Bank's monthly policy meeting and the release of U.S. jobs data that should provide clues about the strength of the economy. Gold futures for April delivery fell $4.50 at $1,286.10 an ounce.
*Weather primary driver, but Ukraine adding "fear" factor. ROME, April 3- Global food prices rose to their highest in almost a year in March, led by unfavourable weather for crops and political tensions over Ukraine, the United Nations food agency said on Thursday.
MOSCOW, April 3- French oil major Total has secured the rights to explore three hard-to-recover oil blocks in West Siberia, according to a statement on the website of the Russian region's governor.
*Libya to finalise deal with rebels to reopen oil ports. LONDON, April 3- Brent crude eased further under $105 on Thursday- to its lowest since November- as oil dealers anticipated a rise in Libyan supply after the government neared a deal with rebels to reopen oil ports. Brent crude slipped 12 cents to $104.67 a barrel by 0955 GMT.
ORLANDO, Fla., April 3- Beer fans line up every winter at Intuition Ale Works in north Florida for the annual tapping of Underdark, a world-class dark brew aged for a year in bourbon barrels that sells out quickly even at $15 a bottle.
ZURICH, April 3- Barry Callebaut, the world's biggest chocolate maker, reported a rise in half-year profits on Thursday, boosted by the turnaround of the Petra Foods' cocoa business it bought over a year ago, and reaffirmed its medium-term sales growth target.
STOCKHOLM, April 3- U.S.-based PR software and services firm Meltwater announced an 895 million Swedish crown cash bid for Swedish peer Cision on Thursday, topping an offer by private equity-controlled Blue Canyon Holdings. Meltwater bid 60 crowns per share for Cision, 9 percent higher than the rival offer from Blue Canyon.
LONDON, April 3- The rise in European stocks this week petered on Thursday after figures showed that economic activity slowed a bit last month and with investors reluctant to add fuel to the rally ahead of the European Central Bank's policy decision later in the day.
LONDON, April 3- Britain's dominant services sector expanded steadily in March, pointing to solid economic growth in the first quarter, even though the rate of expansion was the slowest since last June and hiring eased, a survey showed on Thursday.
*FTSEurofirst 300, Euro STOXX 50 both flat. LONDON, April 3- Spanish shares outperformed flat European markets on Thursday as strong services data strengthened investor optimism about an economic recovery in the struggling southern European country. The index has outperforming its peers in Europe's core countries, such as Germany's Dax.
SHANGHAI, April 3- Hong Kong shares edged up to a fresh three-week closing high on Thursday, buoyed by news the Chinese government would increase investment in railways and hopes that mainland investors may receive greater access to stocks on the Hong Kong exchange.
*To open record 1,600 new 7- Eleven stores in Japan in 2014/ 15. TOKYO, April 3- Japan's Seven& I Holdings Co, the world's biggest convenience store operator, unveiled plans for a record pace of expansion at home, unfazed by a sales tax hike that threatens to damp consumer sentiment in the world's No.3 economy.
LONDON, April 3- Euro zone businesses logged their busiest quarter in three years at the start of 2014 but did so by slashing prices, surveys showed on Thursday, underscoring fears that deflation may soon afflict the region. The European Central Bank is not expected to ease policy any further when it meets later on Thursday.
*Euro flat after dip in Asia ahead of ECB decision. LONDON, April 3- The euro inched lower against the dollar on Thursday ahead of the European Central Bank's monthly policy decision and news conference, eyed for signs of whether the bank is any closer to doing more to boost growth.