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  • *Rate cut is in line with market consensus. ISTANBUL, July 17- Turkey's central bank trimmed its main interest rate for a third consecutive month on Thursday but resisted the deep cuts sought by Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan weeks ahead of a presidential election.

  • MOSCOW, July 17- The Moscow- based Association of European Businesses voiced "strong disagreement" on Thursday with new U.S. sanctions on Russia over the Ukraine crisis, saying they would hurt economic growth "not only in Russia".

  • July 17- UnitedHealth Group Inc, the largest U.S. health insurer, reported higher-than-expected revenue and raised its forecast, helped by the addition of 270,000 healthcare members and strong growth in its Optum pharmacy services division. UnitedHealth also tightened its profit outlook to $5.50- $5.60 per share from $5.40- $5.60.

  • SANCTIONS OVER UKRAINE, SAYS WILL HURT ECONOMIC GROWTH "NOT ONLY IN RUSSIA"- STATEMENT.

  • LONDON, July 17- Russia is stepping up a public relations effort in support of its controversial South Stream gas pipeline project to supply southern Europe, but a rival project to bring gas from Azerbaijan is also upping its game.

  • Alliance Data Systems profit rises 18 pct Thursday, 17 Jul 2014 | 7:41 AM ET

    July 17- Credit card processor Alliance Data Systems Corp reported an 18 percent rise in quarterly profit, helped by strong sales in its customer loyalty programs business. The company's net income attributable to shareholders rose to $137.4 million, or $2.19 per share, in the quarter ended June 30, from $116.4 million, or $1.71 per share, a year earlier.

  • July 17- Wall Street bank Morgan Stanley's quarterly adjusted earnings more than doubled as stronger performances by its investment banking and wealth management businesses more than made up for a fall in revenue from bond trading.

  • In a short defence of why China will invest $41 billion in a bank that it is unlikely to borrow from, the central bank said China stands to benefit if it helps to stabilise the economies and financial markets of other nations.

  • US STOCKS-Futures dip after new Russia sanctions Thursday, 17 Jul 2014 | 7:38 AM ET

    *Morgan Stanley climbs in premarket after earnings. NEW YORK, July 17- U.S. stock index futures were lower on Thursday, in the wake of new U.S. and European Union sanctions on Russia and ahead of data on the labor and housing markets.

  • LONDON, July 17- Targeting major Russian energy firms may come to be seen as the turning point at which U.S. sanctions policy over-reached and spurred a major effort to re-route financial transactions away from the United States.

  • WASHINGTON/ MOSCOW, July 17- President Barack Obama imposed sanctions on some of Russia's biggest firms for the first time, striking at the heart of Vladimir Putin's powerbase by targeting companies closest to him over Moscow's failure to curb violence in Ukraine.

  • July 17- Loblaw Cos Ltd, Canada's largest grocer, appointed Executive Chairman Galen Weston president as part of a management shakeup aimed at helping the company better compete with U.S. rivals.

  • LISBON, July 17- Two of the big three ratings agencies slashed their credit marks for Portugal's Banco Espirito Santo and its biggest shareholder on Thursday, warning of an impact on their solvency from the founding family's growing financial problems.

  • July 17- Wall Street bank Morgan Stanley's quarterly adjusted earnings more than doubled as stronger performances by its investment banking and wealth management businesses more than made up for a fall in revenue from bond trading.

  • *Washington slaps toughest sanctions yet on Russia. LONDON, July 17- Brent oil held above $107 a barrel on Thursday with a sharp drop in U.S. crude stockpiles boosting the demand outlook in the world's top oil consumer while tougher U.S. sanctions on Russia raised geopolitical concerns.

  • Morgan Stanley quarterly profit more than doubles Thursday, 17 Jul 2014 | 7:21 AM ET

    July 17- Wall Street bank Morgan Stanley's quarterly adjusted earnings more than doubled as stronger performances by its investment banking and wealth management businesses more than made up for a fall in revenue from bond trading.

  • July 17- Baker Hughes Inc, the world's third-largest oilfield services company, posted a better-than-expected profit and said it expected increased activity for the remainder of the year. A pick up in drilling activity in North America and steady demand from the Middle East and Asia Pacific helped the company report a 47 percent jump in second-quarter profit.

  • LONDON, July 17- Investment funds focused on emerging economies or high-yield debt may be unable to return investors' money promptly if turmoil hits markets, the Bank of England's financial stability chief warned on Thursday.

  • MOSCOW, July 17- Shares in Russia's No.2 gas producer Novatek extended their losses on Thursday to almost 9 pct in Moscow after the United States imposed new sanctions, effectively ending medium- and long-term dollar funding for the company.

  • July 17- Mattel Inc, the world's largest toymaker, reported its third straight fall in quarterly sales as the decline in demand for Barbie dolls and Fisher Price preschool toys accelerated.