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  • MILAN, Feb 14- Michele Ferrero, Italy's richest man and the owner of a global chocolate and confectionery empire, died on Saturday aged 89, the company said. His death opens the question of succession and potential tie-ups at the family-controlled Ferrero group, which has sales of around 8 billion euros and continued to grow through Italy's longest recession...

  • *Car technology now a focus for Silicon Valley. FRANKFURT/ SAN FRANCISCO, Feb 14- Technology giant Apple is looking beyond mobile devices to learn how to make a self-driving electric car, and is talking to experts at carmakers and automotive suppliers, a senior auto industry source familiar with the discussions said on Saturday. The Cupertino, California- based...

  • More than 50 million people from Michigan to southern Canada were in the path of the storm, which was tracking east over the Great Lakes and gaining strength as it approached the Atlantic coast, the National Weather Service said. The most severe weather was heading for the New England coast, including Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut and New Hampshire,...

  • France passes law to open up Sunday shopping Saturday, 14 Feb 2015 | 3:06 PM ET

    PARIS, Feb 14- France's lower house of parliament approved a law on Saturday letting shops open more often on Sundays, the latest measure in the government's pro-growth bill intended to lift the sluggish economy. But it's a hot-potato issue in France and one that has led to protests and trials, with unions saying it hurts workers' rights and small shop keepers...

  • WASHINGTON, Feb 14- A former UBS AG banker who helped U.S. authorities prosecute the Swiss bank in a tax fraud case has asked for permission to travel to France to comply with a subpoena in another investigation of the company, according a court document. In December, Birkenfeld, who lives in New Hampshire, had asked the court to allow him to move to Europe, but the...

  • Michele Ferrero, owner of Nutella empire, dies at 89 Saturday, 14 Feb 2015 | 2:31 PM ET

    MILAN, Feb 14- Michele Ferrero, Italy's richest man and the owner of a global chocolate and confectionery empire, died on Saturday, two workers within the company said. His death is likely to spur talk of succession and potential tie-ups at the family-controlled Ferrero group, which has continued to grow even through Italy's longest recession since World War Two.

  • Labor Secretary Tom Perez will travel to California to help broker an agreement between shipping companies and dockworkers in a dispute that has led to a partial shutdown of ports along the U.S. West Coast, the White House said on Saturday. "The negotiations over the functioning of the West Coast ports have been taking place for months with the administration...

  • German rail union threatens four-day strike - newspaper Saturday, 14 Feb 2015 | 1:35 PM ET

    BERLIN, Feb 14- Germany's train drivers' union GDL has threatened Deutsche Bahn with a four-day strike unless the state-run railway agrees to a new negotiating agenda in a wage dispute, a German newspaper reported on Saturday. Deutsche Bahn and GDL broke off talks on Wednesday over a wage dispute that caused major disruption late last year.

  • SAO PAULO, Feb 14- Brazil's tax watchdog opened a probe on whether about a dozen people involved in the Petrobras corruption scandal also allegedly had undeclared accounts with HSBC Holdings Plc's private bank in Switzerland, two sources with knowledge of the situation said on Saturday. A former manager at the state-controlled oil giant PetrĂ³leo...

  • Feb 14- Comcast Corp said on Friday that a California Public Utilities Commission Administrative law judge recommended to approve its pending $45 billion merger with Time Warner Cable and related transactions with Charter Communications. The approval, characterized by Comcast as an "important step" for the overall regulatory process, was proposed with a...

  • LONDON, Feb 14- A former boss of HSBC, Stephen Green, has stepped down from his position with a financial services lobby group after allegations that the bank helped people dodge taxes. Green, who is under increasing pressure over the HSBC revelations, quit as chairman of TheCityUK's advisory council, an unpaid position, the organization said on Saturday.

  • SAN FRANCISCO, Feb 14- President Barack Obama has asked Labor Secretary Tom Perez to travel to California to help spur an agreement in talks with the dockworkers' union that have led to closed ports along the U.S. West Coast, the White House said on Saturday. "The negotiations over the functioning of the West Coast Ports have been taking place for months with the...

  • SAN FRANCISCO, Feb 14- President Barack Obama has asked Labor Secretary Tom Perez to travel to California to help spur an agreement in talks with the dockworkers' union that have led to closed ports along the U.S. West Coast, the White House said on Saturday. "The negotiations over the functioning of the West Coast Ports have been taking place for months with the...

  • WHITE HOUSE SAYS OBAMA HAS ASKED LABOR SECRETARY PEREZ TO COME TO CALIFORNIA TO HELP IN TALKS OVER WEST COAST PORTS DISPUTE.

  • MILAN, Feb 14- A government stake in Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena does not mean a bailout of the Italian lender and the state is not expected to become an active shareholder, the bank's chairman said. The Treasury will take a stake in Italy's third-biggest bank because the coupon on state loans the bank received in 2013 has to be repaid in new shares if it does not...

  • ASAHIKAWA, Japan, Feb 14- Honda Motor Co is looking to reduce the number of variations on its cars by a fifth to focus more on quality, its R&D chief said, as Japan's third-biggest automaker tries to emerge from a year of product recalls and quality problems. Honda rolled out virtually no new models last year to spend more time on development. One reason behind the...

  • FRANKFURT, Feb 14- Technology giant Apple is learning how to make a self-driving electric car and is talking to experts at carmakers and automotive suppliers, an automotive source familiar with the talks said on Saturday. The Cupertino, California- based maker of phones, computers and watches is exploring how to make an entire vehicle, not just designing...

  • LONDON, Feb 14- A former boss of HSBC, Stephen Green, has stepped down from his position with a financial services lobby group after allegations that the bank helped hundreds of people dodge taxes during his time in charge. HSBC has admitted failings in compliance and controls in its Swiss private bank after media allegations that it may have enabled clients to...

  • China's economic planners aim to boost service exports Saturday, 14 Feb 2015 | 7:39 AM ET

    The State Council, China's cabinet, said in a document released on Saturday that it would provide total policy support to raise the export value of services relative to goods. The document represented the first instance of China's government outlining an effort to boost service exports as a national strategy, according to a state television report on...

  • KIEV, Feb 14- Ukraine plans to borrow $1 billion to establish a strategic reserve of natural gas and fuel oil to cover local needs in emergency situations, Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk said on Saturday. "The government has adopted a decision to establish reserves of gas and fuel oil worth $1 billion via borrowing under state guarantees," Yatseniuk told a...