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  • Feb 27- While U.S. corporations sometimes may be viewed as persons when it comes to religious beliefs and free speech, a Delaware judge has ruled they cannot be called to testify in court. Dole's owner, Chief Executive David Murdock, Deutsche Bank and two directors are defending against shareholder allegations they engineered a deal that allowed Murdock to buy...

  • Argentina says Dec economic activity rises 0.6 pct Friday, 27 Feb 2015 | 2:09 PM ET

    BUENOS AIRES, Feb 27- Argentina's economic activity rose 0.6 percent in December compared with the year-ago period, the government said on Friday, coming in above expectations for a 0.1 percent gain.

  • ATHENS, Feb 27- Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras denied on Friday that his country would have to seek a third international bailout when a four month extension to its current programme expires. Tsipras also said the government had requested a reduction in the country's debt, even though EU/IMF creditors insist Greece must meet its obligations in full.

  • *Baker Hughes data shows pace of rig count drop slows. Both Brent and U.S. futures briefly pared gains after data from oil services company Baker Hughes showed its U.S. oil drilling rig count fell only 33 to 986 this week, after rigs were only down 37 in the previous week. Brent April crude was up $1.27 at $61.32 a barrel at 1:28 p.m. EST, on pace to post a 15 percent...

  • NEW YORK, Feb 27- The U.S. stock market has been quiet this week- too quiet. Wall Street has traded in a tight range of late, with both volatility and trading volumes drying up as the earnings season winds down and Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen's recent Congressional testimony delivered no surprises. "Economic data will be the biggest driver of market moves over...

  • Feb 27- Drilling contractor Hercules Offshore Inc's shares fell as much as 33 percent to a record low on Friday, a day after Deutsche Bank cut its price target on the company's stock to $0. State-owned oil company Saudi Aramco terminated its contract for one of Hercules Offshore rigs on Thursday, prompting the brokerage to downgrade the stock to' sell' from' buy'.

  • *Takes asset impairment charge of $438.4 mln. Feb 27- Rowan Cos Plc said state-owned oil company Saudi Aramco was likely to continue employing about a third of the company's 28 contracted rigs, sending the offshore driller's shares up as much as 5.5 percent on Friday. Rival Hercules Offshore Inc said on Thursday that Saudi Aramco had terminated a drilling...

  • PM Tsipras denies Greece will seek third bailout Friday, 27 Feb 2015 | 1:35 PM ET

    ATHENS, Feb 27- Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras denied on Friday that his country would have to seek a third international bailout when a four month extension to its current programme expires. In a televised speech to his cabinet, Tsipras also said the government had requested a reduction in the country's debt, even though EU/IMF creditors insist Greece...

  • MEXICO CITY, Feb 27- Mexico has approved the auction terms for five shallow water areas containing around 355 million barrels of oil equivalent as part of its Round One tender opening up oil fields to foreign investors, the country's energy regulator said on Friday. Round One includes several fields grouped by basin, with the first batch of 14 contracts approved...

  • EU and Cuba to restart talks after cultural dispute Friday, 27 Feb 2015 | 1:26 PM ET

    BRUSSELS, Feb 27- Cuba and the European Union will hold a third round of talks in Havana next week aimed at increasing trade, investment and political dialogue after overcoming a dispute that delayed the negotiations, an EU official said on Friday. EU officials suspect that Havana may not have felt ready for a third round last year because they were due to discuss...

  • NEW YORK, Feb 27- U.S. stocks were little changed in early afternoon trading on Friday as mixed economic data was offset by some upbeat corporate earnings. Following the release of their results, shares of Monster Beverage jumped 13.4 percent to $140.67, while shares of Ross Stores gained 6.3 percent to $105.33. Midwest dropped to its lowest reading since July...

  • Feb 27- Apple Inc's latest product, the Apple Watch, might replace the need for car keys, Chief Executive Tim Cook told the Telegraph in an interview. Apple was not immediately available for comment. The company has scheduled a special event on March 9, where it will showcase the Apple Watch and that will be launched in April, the report said.

  • CRUDE FUTURES PARE GAINS AFTER BAKER HUGHES OIL RIG COUNT SHOWS DROP OF ONLY 33.

  • *Greece faces 1.5 bln euro debt payment to IMF in March. *Pressure on Athens to quickly complete bailout review for aid. BRUSSELS/ ATHENS, Feb 27- Greece is running out of options to fund itself despite a four-month bailout extension, raising pressure on Athens to quickly implement reforms it has vocally opposed or default on debt repayments in a matter of weeks.

  • LONDON, Feb 27- Copper rebounded from losses on Friday and climbed 7 percent overall in February, the biggest monthly gain in more than two years, as investors bet on renewed demand following China's long Lunar New Year holiday. Copper slid earlier on Friday after sharp increases in inventories triggered concerns about oversupply, but bullish investors got the...

  • *Airbus surges after posting sharp rise in operating profits. LONDON/ PARIS, Feb 27- European shares rose on Friday, building on their best start to the year since regional benchmarks began in late 1986, to close at seven-year highs, supported by encouraging earnings reports. Shares in Airbus were up 7.2 percent after it posted a rise in operating earnings and...

  • NEW YORK, Feb 27- Raising interest rates too late is safer than acting too early, an influential Federal Reserve official said on Friday, endorsing a high-profile research paper that argues that the U.S. economy, given time, can rebound to normal growth. The paper by four top U.S. economists, presented on Friday to a roomful of powerful central bankers in New York,...

  • U.S., Liberia kick off trial of Ebola drug ZMapp Friday, 27 Feb 2015 | 12:50 PM ET

    CHICAGO, Feb 27- U.S. and Liberian researchers have started a clinical trial to test the safety and effectiveness of Mapp Biopharmaceutical Inc's Ebola drug ZMapp, an experimental treatment that has already been tried in a handful of Ebola patients, including two U.S. missionaries. The trial, a joint effort by the Liberian government and the National Institute...

  • ATHENS, Feb 27- Greece used "creative ambiguity" to win a loan lifeline from its international partners, Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis said, provoking anger in Germany's parliament which approved the deal on Friday. Varoufakis, a hero of the anti-austerity left who has raised hackles among his more orthodox euro zone peers, said Greece had drawn up an...

  • CHICAGO, Feb 27- Chicago's rating downgrade to Baa2 by Moody's Investors Service on Friday could terminate four interest-rate swap agreements, costing the city about $58 million, according to the credit rating agency. The swaps, which the city uses to hedge interest-rate risk on its variable-rate bonds, can be ended by bank counterparties if Chicago's credit...