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  • *Poll pegs Brazil 2014/ 15 coffee crop at 48.9 million bags. NEW YORK/ LONDON, March 7- ICE arabica coffee futures rose on Friday as resistance near the key psychological level of $2 slowed a sharp rally triggered by dry weather this year in top grower Brazil.

  • ON BOARD AIR FORCE ONE, March 7- The White House on Friday appeared to play down the possibility of changing U.S. policy on exporting natural gas to address the situation in Ukraine.

  • March 7- Visa Inc and MasterCard Inc said they had launched a cross-industry group to improve security for card transactions and press U.S. retailers and banks to meet a 2015 deadline to adopt technology that would make it safer to pay with plastic.

  • *Gold posts 5th straight weekly gain on Ukraine tensions. NEW YORK/ LONDON, March 7- Gold tumbled 1 percent on Friday after data showed U.S. job growth accelerated sharply, easing fears of an abrupt economic slowdown and keeping the Federal Reserve on track to continue reducing its monetary stimulus.

  • CARACAS, March 7- Venezuela is renewing a $5 billion credit line with China that will be repaid in oil and other fuels and is negotiating a financing deal with Russia for an undisclosed sum, the country's economy vice president said on Friday.

  • WASHINGTON, March 7- The U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has hired an outside firm to study fairness in its employees' performance ratings, the agency said on Friday in response to concerns about discrimination. House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling of Texas and two fellow Republicans made the request in a letter to the bureau.

  • *Wheat up 8 pct for week on short-covering, Ukraine jitters. Wheat hit a three-month high and several soybean contracts hit life-of-contract highs, but both markets pared gains by midsession. At the Chicago Board of Trade at 11:45 a.m. CST, benchmark May corn was down 5 cents at $4.86 per bushel after reaching $5.02-1/ 2, its highest level since early September.

  • NEW YORK, March 7- British financier Guy Hands has ended his long-running U.S. lawsuit accusing Citigroup Inc of defrauding him into buying music company EMI Group Ltd, but he retained the right to pursue the case in England.

  • March 7- A whistleblower will be paid $63.9 million for providing tips that led to JPMorgan Chase& Co's agreement to pay $614 million and tighten oversight to resolve charges that it defrauded the government into insuring flawed home loans.

  • WINNIPEG, Manitoba/ OTTAWA, March 7- Canada's government took the drastic step on Friday of forcing the country's two major rail companies to ship at least 500,000 tonnes of grain each a week to ease a massive backlog that is hurting farmers.

  • With proven oil reserves of 340 billion barrels, the world's second-largest behind the Middle East, Latin America is trying to attract foreign capital for Colombia's onshore and offshore blocks, Argentina's large unconventional resources and Mexico's fast-track energy reform.

  • *Putin rebuffs Obama as Ukraine crisis escalates. NEW YORK, March 7- U.S. stocks trimmed earlier gains on Friday's jobs data to trade little changed by midday as investors turned cautious before the weekend, with the S&P 500 near record highs and a simmering crisis in Ukraine.

  • *Poll pegs Brazil 14/ 15 coffee crop at 48.9 mln bags. NEW YORK/ LONDON, March 7- ICE arabica coffee futures rose on Friday, as resistance near the key psychological level of $2 slowed the sharp rally triggered by dry weather earlier this year in top grower Brazil.

  • Global grain prices, along with domestic ones on Ukraine's physical market, have rallied this week on the rising tensions in one of the world's top grain exporters.

  • *Commission has begun legal proceedings against Germany. BRUSSELS, March 7- EU scientists have found that the new car coolant at the centre of a dispute that has pitched regulators against Germany and its luxury carmaker Daimler does not pose any serious safety risks, the European Commission said on Friday.

  • Global grain prices, along with domestic ones on Ukraine's physical market, have rallied this week on the rising tensions in one of the world's top grain exporters.

  • FACTBOX-How women are represented in global business Friday, 7 Mar 2014 | 12:28 PM ET

    LONDON, March 7- Reuters is running a series of stories about women in finance as part of its coverage of International Women's Day on March 8. *Just one in seven delegates attending the annual World Economic Forum this year was a woman, according to Grant Thornton's report.

  • March 7- Close-out retailer Big Lots Inc said same-store sales would stop falling in the current fiscal year as its investments to boost sales start paying off.

  • LONDON, March 7- For top Morgan Stanley financier Cecile Houlot-Hillary, every day brings pressure in the form of complex loan deals, intense competition and demands from high level clients.

  • Speak up, top French advisor tells women in business Friday, 7 Mar 2014 | 12:25 PM ET

    LONDON, March 7- The first time Anne Meaux met Indian billionaire Lakshmi Mittal he laughed at her. The incident was an early example of an ability to tell unpalatable truths to powerful people that has since propelled Meaux to the position of France's top PR advisor.