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LONDON, April 24- Oil edged further above $109 a barrel on Thursday as the dispute between Russia and the West over Ukraine added to supply concerns, although record U.S. crude inventories kept gains in check.
Foxconn, a major supplier to Apple Inc, wants to expand beyond China, where its massive production base has come under fire from international labour groups after a series of suicides and accidents since 2010.. Indonesian government officials had previously said they were still discussing the terms of the project with Foxconn but declined to give any details.
JOHANNESBURG, April 24- The Association of Mineworkers of South Africa President Joseph Mathunjwa told Reuters on Thursday he was not sure if the revised wage offer from the world's top platinum companies was ready to take to members. "I don't know at this stage," he told Reuters as he entered venue where talks were still being held in Johannesburg.
April 24- Time Warner Cable Inc, the second-largest U.S. cable operator, reported first-quarter profit above analysts' estimates as it added more residential subscribers than expected for its high-speed data services. Time Warner Cable's quarterly profit jumped 19.5 percent to $479 million, or $1.70 per share, in the first quarter ended March 31.
April 24- Aetna Inc said on Thursday that first-quarter net income rose 36 percent as it added people in its Medicare and commercial business, which includes customers from insurance exchanges created under President Barack Obama's signature healthcare law.
TOKYO/ BEIJING, April 24- Three employees at one of Marubeni Corp's grain trading unit in China have been detained, Chinese customs said on Thursday, a move prompted by allegations of tax evasion on soybean imports.
April 24- PulteGroup Inc, the No. 2 U.S. homebuilder, reported an 8 percent drop in quarterly profit as it handed over fewer homes to buyers and said orders fell 6 percent. The company's net income dropped to $74.8 million, or 19 cents per share, in the first quarter ended March 31 from $81.8 million, or 21 cents per share, a year earlier.
*Physical copper premiums in China rising sharply. LONDON, April 24- Copper touched its strongest level in three weeks on Thursday and nickel surged to a new 14- month peak as seasonal Chinese demand for metals ramped up and concerns over nickel supplies prompted more speculative buying. "People are looking for slightly firmer demand out of China.
MILAN, April 24- Italy's funding costs remained close to multi-year lows at a bond auction on Thursday, as speculation the European Central Bank may start an asset purchase programme supported demand for higher-yielding debt.
PARIS, April 24- Pernod Ricard said it was buying Kenwood Vineyards to beef up its premium wines portfolio in the United States, the French drinks company's biggest market, and was looking for more small-scale acquisitions.
NEW DELHI, April 24- Nokia said that due to an ongoing tax dispute its Indian mobile phone handset plant was unlikely to be included in a deal due to be concluded on Friday for the sale of its global handset business to Microsoft.
April 24- Starwood Hotels& Resorts Worldwide Inc's quarterly profit topped Wall Street estimates as growth in business travel in North America boosted both occupancy and room rates.
GENEVA, April 24- Russia has told the United States that its Ukraine- related sanctions on a Russian bank and Russian citizens are illegal under World Trade Organization rules and must be scrapped. Russian Economy Minister Alexei Ulyukayev said last week that Russia could launch a dispute at the world trade body to challenge U.S. sanctions.
LONDON, April 24- Gold prices were steady on Thursday, hovering above a 2-1/ 2- month low hit earlier in the week, as a rally in equities dimmed its appeal as an alternative asset and investors remained cautious ahead of more U.S. economic data and any further developments in Ukraine.
SHANGHAI, April 24- Sportswear firm Adidas AG is shifting some orders from a factory in south China that has been at the centre of one of the country's biggest labour strikes, underlining a rising challenge for firms doing business in China where an increasingly savvy workforce is pushing harder for its rights.
April 24- Time Warner Cable Inc, the second-largest U.S. cable operator, posted a 19.5 percent rise in quarterly profit as its residential subscriber trends improved through the quarter. Net income attributable to common shareholders rose to $479 million, or $1.70 per share, in the first quarter ended March 31, from $401 million, or $1.34 per share, a year earlier.
April 24- Aetna Inc., the third-largest U.S. health insurer, said on Thursday that first-quarter profit rose as it added new members, and it raised its outlook for the year. Aetna reported net income of $665.5 million, or $1.82 per share, up from $490.1 million, or $1.48 per share, a year earlier. Excluding special items, the company reported earnings of $1.98 per share.
*M&A activity boosts Alstom, Scania. LONDON, April 24- European shares resumed their rise on Thursday, boosted by mergers and acquisitions activity and upbeat updates from electrical gear maker Schneider Electric and oil services group Technip among others.
HONG KONG, April 24- A model that allows Hong Kong and Shanghai investors to trade equities on each other's bourses could eventually extend to commodity futures, the chief executive of Hong Kong's exchange said on Thursday.
AMSTERDAM, April 24- The European Central Bank could embark on a broad-based asset buying plan if the euro zone inflation outlook worsens, ECB President Mario Draghi said, adding that a rise in the euro could also trigger policy action. The euro fell to $1.3815 after the release of Draghi's comments from around $1.3835 beforehand.