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  • NEW YORK/ LONDON, Sept 23- Gold rose on Tuesday after the first U.S.-led airstrikes against Islamic State and other militants inside Syria, but early gains evaporated amid a lack of followthrough buying.

  • NEW YORK, Sept 23- Shares of Ascena Retail Group Inc were suffering their biggest one-day decline in 14 years on Tuesday, a day after the company reported weak fourth-quarter results. The stock lost 16.8 percent to $13.75, its biggest daily drop since Sept. 24, 1990.

  • Sept 23- Deere& Co, the world's largest farm equipment maker, said it was exploring strategic options for its low-margin crop insurance business and had hired Citigroup as its adviser.

  • *UniCredit, Santander to hold around one third each of new entity. MILAN, Sept 23- Italian bank UniCredit SpA and Spain's Santander SA are in talks to merge their fund management businesses and create a European powerhouse overseeing some 350 billion euros of assets.

  • LONDON/ NEW YORK, Sept 23- British bank Barclays was hit with a combined $77 million in fines from British and U.S. regulators on Tuesday as the lender continues to be dogged by problems from its past.

  • LONDON, Sept 23- West African nations hit by the Ebola virus epidemic will need international help to rebuild for years to come and it is time for mining companies and business to get involved, the head of the African Development Bank said on Tuesday.

  • WASHINGTON, Sept 23- Backers of the U.S. Export-Import Bank may push again for a long-term extension of its charter as early as November after a nine-month renewal left the bank's future undecided.

  • BERLIN, Sept 23- German venture capital group Rocket Internet, which has launched dozens of online start-ups, priced its initial public offering on Tuesday in a range of 35.50- 42.50 euros per share, valuing the company at up to 6.2 billion euros.

  • NEW YORK, Sept 23- The largest soda makers in the United States promised on Tuesday to cut the calories in soft drinks nationwide by 20 percent by 2025..

  • NEW YORK, Sept 23- U.S. stocks were modestly lower on Tuesday, with the S&P 500 on track for its third straight daily decline as investors digested signs of slowing global growth. Wall Street's losses tracked Europe, which was down after data showed a contraction in French business activity and slower growth in German manufacturing this month.

  • NEW YORK, Sept 23- Galmed Pharmaceuticals Ltd soared on Tuesday after the company said the Food and Drug Administration had granted fast track designation for its product candidate, aramchol, designed to treat non-alcoholic steato-hepatitis.

  • *Raiffeisen Bank tumbles after warning on Ukraine, Hungary. Austria's Raiffeisen Bank International, down 10 percent, led the declines on the FTSEurofirst 300 index. The bank said it might lose as much as 500 million euros this year because of problems in Ukraine and Hungary.

  • *Libya and Iraqi oil output, exports rise. For Brent, higher output from Libya and Iraq overshadowed the start of U.S.-led air strikes against Islamist groups in Syria and stronger Chinese economic data. Brent for November delivery fell 17 cents at $96.80 a barrel by 12:04 EDT after climbing as high as $97.59 a barrel in early trading.

  • METALS-Copper steadies after China factory data Tuesday, 23 Sep 2014 | 12:33 PM ET

    *China manufacturing unexpectedly picks up in Sept. LONDON, Sept 23- Copper prices steadied on Tuesday, after touching three-month lows in the previous session, as manufacturing data from top consumer China helped allay some fears about the outlook for demand.

  • The United States and Arab allies bombed Syria for the first time on Tuesday, killing scores of Islamic State fighters and members of a separate al Qaeda- linked group, opening a new front against militants by joining Syria's three-year-old civil war. AbbVie has agreed to a deal to acquire Shire, which fell 1.9 percent to $251.38 in New York.

  • Sept 23- Carnival Corp will relocate its chief operating officer to Shanghai from Miami and expand his role, underscoring the increasing importance of Asia for the world's largest cruise operator. The $29 billion global cruise industry is expected to benefit in the coming years from the rise of the middle class in emerging economies such as China and India.

  • LONDON, Sept 23- Recent stirrings of long-dormant financial market volatility have come in the nick of time for an industry that has been bleeding revenue and jobs for years, even though bankers doubt the secular downsizing of the trading world can be reversed.

  • NEW YORK, Sept 23- New York's Metropolitan Transportation Authority is facing a funding gap of $15.2 billion in its proposed $32 billion 2015-2019 infrastructure plan, according to a document posted on the organization's website.

  • *Action may deter Pfizer from returning to bid for AstraZeneca. Burger King, which is in the process of an inversion deal with Canada's Tim Horton's, said Tuesday it would proceed with its $11.5 billion deal despite the Treasury actions, saying the transaction was not about the tax benefits.

  • Sept 23- Colombian banking group Grupo Aval SA raised $1.26 billion, more than expected, from its initial public offering in New York on Tuesday, and plans to use the funds to bolster its banks' capital. J.P. Morgan Securities LLC, Goldman Sachs& Co, Citigroup Global Markets Inc and Morgan Stanley& Co LLC are underwriting the offering.