WASHINGTON, July 31- U.S. labor costs recorded their largest increase in more than 5-1/ 2 years in the second quarter, a sign that a long-awaited acceleration in wage growth was imminent. The Employment Cost Index, the broadest measure of labor costs, rose 0.7 percent after increasing 0.3 percent in the first quarter, the Labor Department said on Thursday.» Read More
Feb 13- Burger King Worldwide Inc, known for its Whopper hamburgers, reported a better-than-expected 37 percent jump in quarterly profit as new products, including the Big King sandwich and Satisfries french fries, drew customers in North America.
TORONTO, Feb 13- Telus Corp, one of Canada's biggest telecom companies, posted a 13 percent rise in fourth-quarter profit on Thursday and set ambitious 2014 targets, helped by expansion in both its wireless and fixed-line businesses.
Feb 13- Canadian Tire Corp posted a 17 percent rise in quarterly profit, driven by strong sales of outdoor equipment, casual clothing and sports footwear. The company's net income rose to C $191 million, or C $2.32 per share, in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 28 from C $162.8 million, or C $1.99 per share, a year earlier.
Feb 13- Canadian oil and gas producer Cenovus Energy Inc's fourth-quarter operating profit fell short of analysts' estimates as production at its Foster Creek oil sands project in northern Alberta dropped 11 percent.
*Cisco falls after results, outlook. *Comcast to buy Time Warner. NEW YORK, Feb 13- U.S. stock index futures declined on Thursday, after a disappointing outlook from Cisco Systems and ahead of data on retail sales and the labor market.
LONDON, Feb 13- The dollar fell to a two-week low against the euro and lost more than half a percent against other major currencies, the latest sign of its failure to launch this year which has disappointed many investors. Sweden's crown also fell on the back of similarly soft data.
*Shares drop after 5- day rally, Italy politics weigh in Europe. *Gold back on front foot after hitting 3- month high. In Europe, the fading momentum was compounded by political uncertainty in Italy, where Prime Minister Enrico Letta defied pressure to make way for the centre-left leader Matteo Renzi.
*Wellness is "major, major platform of growth"- Nestle CEO. LONDON, Feb 13- Swiss food giant Nestle's deeper dive into healthcare by taking over the dermatology joint venture it had with L'Oreal suggests further deals in the space are likely.
CHICAGO, Feb 13- Bunge Ltd, one of the world's largest agricultural trading houses, on Thursday reported a fourth-quarter profit due to strong margins for oilseed processing. Bunge reported net earnings of $115 million, or 78 cents per share, compared with a year-earlier net loss of $610 million, or $4.17 per share.
Feb 13- PepsiCo Inc reported a better-than-expected 5 percent rise in quarterly profit and said it would return about $2.3 billion more to shareholders in 2014 in the form of share buybacks and dividend. PepsiCo also said it was extending its $1 billion annual savings plan for another five years to 2019..
Feb 13- Canadian plane and train maker Bombardier Inc reported a lower-than-expected quarterly profit due to a fall in gross margin and forecast a slowdown in revenue growth at its rail unit this year. Bombardier reported net income of $97 million, or 5 cents per share, for the quarter ended Dec. 31.
Feb 13- Avon Products Inc on Thursday reported lower-than-expected fourth-quarter revenue, as business fell in emerging markets that had been a source of growth for the beauty company as its North American business waned. But business fell in three major markets- Mexico, Russia and China.
*RevPAR from Asia, excluding China, falls 3 pct. Feb 13- Starwood Hotels& Resorts Worldwide Inc reported fourth-quarter revenue below Wall Street's expectations, partly due to lower occupancy and room rates in Asia, excluding China, and forecast a weak profit for the current quarter.
TORONTO, Feb 13- Barrick Gold Corp reported a big fourth-quarter loss on Thursday as it took another impairment charge, cut its gold reserve estimate by 26 percent and said a key cost measure might rise this year. The world's largest gold miner forecast all-in sustaining costs of between $920 and $980 to produce one ounce of gold for 2014, up from $915 in 2013..
MILAN/ LONDON, Feb 13- Italy sold the top planned amount in bonds on Thursday and paid the cheapest three-year yield since the launch of the euro as uncertainty over the prime minister's future failed to deter investors hunting for returns.
PARIS, Feb 13- Hermes' understated style is helping it weather a crackdown on corruption in China that has dented the sales of many rival luxury goods makers, the French company said on Thursday. China's efforts to weed out illegal gift-giving has hit luxury watch makers and logo-branded products, such as LVMH's Louis Vuitton and Kering's Gucci products.
TORONTO, Feb 13- Manulife Financial Corp reported a 20 percent rise in fourth-quarter profit as stronger mutual fund sales and a C $350 million gain on the sale of its Taiwan insurance business offset weaker insurance sales, but results still fell short of estimates.
Feb 13- Burger King Worldwide Inc, known for its Whopper hamburgers, reported a 37 percent jump in quarterly profit, as new products drove the company's same-restaurant sales growth in North America. Burger King's net income rose to $66.8 million, or 19 cents per share, in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31 from $48.6 million, or 14 cents per share, a year earlier.
Feb 13- Avon Products Inc on Thursday reported lower-than-expected fourth-quarter revenue, hurt by a big drop in its North American business and departures of more of its sales representatives.
Feb 13- PepsiCo Inc reported a 5 percent jump in quarterly profit, helped by strong sales of Frito-Lay chips in the Americas and cost-cutting measures.