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  • *Gold retreats from 4- week high as dollar recovers. *Gold premiums in India hit $120/ oz. LONDON, Oct 23- Gold retreated from four-week highs on Wednesday as a slight recovery in the dollar prompted some investors to cash in gains, with a rally sparked by weaker-than-expected U.S. non-farm payrolls data running out of steam.

  • UPDATE 3-Oil slips towards $109 as stockpiles rise Wednesday, 23 Oct 2013 | 5:08 AM ET

    LONDON, Oct 23- Brent crude slipped towards $109 a barrel on Wednesday, pressured by rising inventories in China and expectations of a further buildup in the United States, the world's top consumer. Brent crude slipped 71 cents to $109.26 a barrel by 0846 GMT, after hitting a session high of $110.06.

  • Asian markets saw widespread weakness as a variety of factors ranging from a strengthening yen in Japan and fading rate cut hopes in Australia added to the negativity. "What has happened this morning is that we have the Chinese rate surge on the policy tightening fears," said Alvin Tan, a strategist at Societe Generale in London.

  • *Willing to cooperate with Kurdistan on shared blocks. MOSUL, Iraq, Oct 23- Iraq's northwest Nineveh province has started talks with oil companies and is drafting terms to attract investment in its significant oil and gas reserves, steps certain to antagonise the central government.

  • *Argentina plans to challenge decision at WTO. BRUSSELS, Oct 23- European Union member states agreed to impose punitive duties on biodiesel imported from Argentina and Indonesia, which are accused of selling it into the bloc at unfairly low prices, according to diplomats.

  • *Dollar index touches close to 9- mth low, euro/dlr sets 2- yr high Euro index at 2 year peak, could bother European policymakers. LONDON, Oct 23- The dollar struggled near a nine month low versus a basket of currencies on Wednesday after U.S. jobs data prompted investors to all but rule out the chances of a cut in U.S monetary stimulus before next year.

  • In 2010 the Kuwait Investment Authority paid 600 million euros for a 4.8 percent stake in French nuclear group Areva. The utility announced on Monday that an EDF-led consortium would build two Areva- designed reactors in the UK.

  • NEW DELHI/ MUMBAI, Oct 23- India looks set for bumper harvests of winter crops such as wheat, chickpeas and rapeseed in the wake of a strong monsoon that has left the soil moist and topped up reservoirs.

  • *Heineken and Fortum fall after results. LONDON, Oct 23- European shares fell in early trade on Wednesday, after falls in banks following an asset quality review and disappointing earnings reports from the likes of Heineken took the steam out of a nine day rally.

  • Hong Kong shares fall 1.4 pct on China tightening worries Wednesday, 23 Oct 2013 | 4:08 AM ET

    HONG KONG, Oct 23- Hong Kong shares tumbled on Wednesday, pushed down by weak China markets after a mid-morning spike in the mainland's short-term money rates aggravated fears the central bank may soon tighten liquidity. The Hang Seng Index closed down 1.4 percent at 23,000 points, its lowest close since Oct. 10.

  • *Lobby group AEB forecasts Russia auto sales down 5 pct in 2013. MOSCOW, Oct 23- The head of U.S. automaker Ford Motor Co's Russian venture sees auto sales in the country staying around flat in 2014 after a fall this year, but is optimistic on the market's longer-term prospects.

  • FRANKFURT, Oct 23- The European Central Bank vowed on Wednesday to submit the euro zone's top banks to a comprehensive batch of tests next year, staking its credibility on a review that aims to build confidence in the sector.

  • *Heineken shares down 4 pct, Carlsberg, ABI also down. BRUSSELS, Oct 23- Heineken, the world's third largest brewer by volume, lowered its guidance for full-year profit after beer sales in eastern European dropped sharply and slipped in Brazil and in its large African markets.

  • FRANKFURT, Oct 23- The European Central Bank vowed on Wednesday to submit the euro zone's top banks to a comprehensive batch of tests next year, staking its credibility on a review that aims to build confidence in the sector.

  • LONDON, Oct 23- European broke their nine-day winning streak on Wednesday as blue chips including chip maker STMicroelectronics and brewer Heineken unveiled weak updates and traders took profit on "overbought" indexes.

  • China shares fall as spike in cash rates causes jitters Wednesday, 23 Oct 2013 | 3:10 AM ET

    HONG KONG, Oct 23- China shares dropped more than 1 percent as investors took profit on the year's outperformers after short-term money rates spiked on Wednesday as official media said the central bank may soon tighten liquidity.

  • ECB says bank health test to strengthen confidence Wednesday, 23 Oct 2013 | 3:00 AM ET

    FRANKFURT, Oct 23- The European Central Bank vowed on Wednesday to submit the euro zone's top banks to a comprehensive batch of tests next year, staking its credibility on a review that is crucial to rebuilding confidence in the sector.

  • LONDON, Oct 23- British online fashion retailer ASOS plans to step up investment to support its rapid sales growth, the firm said on Wednesday, as it met forecasts with a 23 percent rise in full-year profit.

  • LONDON, Oct 23- British American Tobacco said it remained on track for a year of solid earnings growth after price rises in the first nine months of the year helped it to offset a 3 percent fall in total tobacco volumes.

  • *Samsung SDI shares drop 8 pct. Oct 23- Samsung Electronics Co Ltd moved to tighten its grip on vital electronics parts supplies as it looks to stay ahead of rival Apple Inc with new products in a fast changing technology industry.

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