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  • SEOUL/ LOS ANGELES, March 4- Asiana Airlines Inc settled with 72 passengers of its flight that crashed at the San Francisco airport in 2013, a spokesman of the South Korean carrier said on Wednesday. Frank Pitre, a lawyer for the plaintiffs in the lawsuit, told the Associated Press this was the first settlement in connection with the crash, the Associated Press...

  • BEIJING, March 4- China's defence budget this year will rise about 10 percent compared with 2014, the spokeswoman for the country's parliament said on Wednesday. Spokeswoman Fu Ying told a news conference that the actual figure would be released on Thursday, when the annual session of China's largely rubber-stamp parliament opens. Last year, defence spending...

  • HONG KONG, March 4- China's yuan edged higher on Wednesday after a private survey showed activity in China's services sector grew modestly in February, though the underlying currency trend remained weak. Late on Saturday, the People's Bank of China cut interest rates, its third major easing since late November. On Wednesday, the People's Bank of China set the...

  • *Bank of Canada seen holding policy steady. TOKYO, March 4- Asian shares and the dollar eased on Wednesday as investors grew cautious before upcoming central bank meetings and U.S. jobs data, while India's central bank surprised with its second inter-meeting rate cut this year. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down about 0.2...

  • Republicans on the committee that oversees financial services disagree, and Texas Representative Randy Neugebauer plans to introduce a bill later this week to replace the agency's director with a five-person commission appointed by the president. "Sometimes, I think you are trying to do good, but in the end, what you do creates harm to an industry where people...

  • Brent holds above $60 after Saudi price hikes Tuesday, 3 Mar 2015 | 10:10 PM ET

    *Fighting escalates in Libya before UN talks. SINGAPORE, March 4- Brent held above $60 a barrel on Wednesday supported by a hike in Saudi crude prices and strikes on oil facilities in Libya. In a move widely seen as a vote of confidence by Saudi Arabia in demand recovery, the OPEC kingpin raised the official selling prices for its oil deliveries to Asia and the United...

  • *Sumco dives on fund-raising announcement. TOKYO, March 4- Japan's Nikkei share average dropped to a one-week low on Wednesday morning after weak performances in U.S. shares triggered profit-taking, while Sharp Corp dived after Standard& Poor's cut its credit rating. The dollar backed off from Tuesday's high of 120.27 yen, falling 0.1 percent to 119.62 yen.

  • TOKYO, March 4- Uber Technologies Inc said it was reviewing a free ride service in Japan after the government reportedly told it to halt the pilot project, a blow to the company's hopes in a potentially big market. Kyodo News reported late on Tuesday that Japan's transport ministry had told Uber to halt the month-old service in the southern city of Fukuoka on the...

  • MELBOURNE, March 4- London copper firmed on Wednesday, after falling more than one percent in the previous session, as easier policies by European and Chinese central banks outweighed concerns over Chinese demand. *The most-traded May copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange slipped by 0.7 percent to 42,510 yuan a tonne, but was off overnight lows of...

  • March 3- About 70 passengers of an Asiana Airlines Inc flight that crashed at the San Francisco airport in 2013 have reached a settlement with the airline, the Associated Press reported on Tuesday. Frank Pitre, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, told the Associated Press this was the first settlement in connection with the crash. Pitre could not immediately be reached...

  • SYDNEY, March 4- Australia's economy grew moderately last quarter as a strong trade performance and the largest rise in consumer spending in almost three years helped offset softness elsewhere. "The good news is we've now completed 23 years of continuous growth," said Michael Blythe, chief economist at Commonwealth Bank. The economy grew 2.5 percent for all of...

  • BEIJING, March 4- Activity in China's services sector grew modestly in February as new orders rose at their quickest pace in three months, a private survey showed just a few days after the central bank cut interest rates to stimulate the world's second-largest economy. Accounting for 48 percent of China's $10.2 trillion economy last year, the services sector...

  • BEIJING, March 4- Activity in China's services sector grew modestly in February as new orders rose at their quickest pace in three months, a private survey showed just a few days after the central bank cut interest rates to stimulate the world's second-largest economy. Official surveys showed on Sunday that growth in the services sector picked up to 53.9 last...

  • SOME PASSENGERS OF ASIANA AIRLINES FLIGHT THAT CRASHED IN CALIFORNIA REACH SETTLEMENT WITH AIRLINE, ASSOCIATED PRESS REPORTS.

  • But Japan's deputy chief trade negotiator, Hiroshi Oe, told reporters there were no discussions about currency manipulation, and if the issue was brought to the table it would derail any agreement. Japan yen's has slumped since late 2012, when Prime Minister Shinzo Abe returned to power and started pursuing aggressive stimulus policies, worrying U.S....

  • HANGZHOU, China, March 4- Alibaba Group Holding Ltd is launching a cloud computing hub in Silicon Valley on Wednesday, the e-commerce giant's first outside of China, underscoring its global ambitions in the face of stiff and entrenched competition. Alibaba's Aliyun cloud division intends the new data center to cater initially to Chinese companies with...

  • SINGAPORE, March 4- Gold took a breather on Wednesday after a two-day losing streak but was hovering near its lowest in a week as the dollar held close to 11- year highs, with investors awaiting U.S. economic data and a European Central Bank meeting. *Spot gold was little changed at $1,204.55 an ounce by 0035 GMT. In the previous session, the metal fell to a one-week low...

  • *Bank of Canada seen holding policy steady. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down about 0.1 percent in early trade, while Japan's Nikkei stock average fell 0.8 percent. The euro inched up against the dollar to $1.1180, a day ahead of a European Central Bank meeting, at which policymakers are expected to announce additional details...

  • SAN FRANCISCO, March 3- Venture capitalist John Doerr on Tuesday sought to fend off allegations of sexism at his firm, Kleiner Perkins Caufield& Byers, in a gender discrimination lawsuit targeting the firm, insisting he had been a strong advocate for women there. But he also had to handle questions- from whether he had denied former Kleiner Perkins partner Ellen...

  • TOKYO, March 4- The dollar hovered below an 11- year high versus a basket of major currencies on Wednesday, as investors awaited U.S. economic data and a European Central Bank meeting later this week for fresh direction clues. The dollar index last stood at 95.355, having backed off slightly from Tuesday's high of 95.570, its strongest level since September 2003.