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  • SINGAPORE, Feb 3- Standard Chartered is looking to sell its retail business in the Philippines, part of a wider bid by embattled CEO Peter Sands to cut costs and shrink the bank's asset base, a person with direct knowledge of the matter said. A spokesman for Standard Chartered said the bank would "not comment on speculation". Standard Chartered currently has five...

  • *Iran circulates draft contracts to foreign firms- sources. ANKARA/ LONDON, Feb 2- Iran is sweetening the terms it offers on oil development contracts to draw the interest of foreign investors deterred by sanctions and low crude prices, as its pragmatic president seeks to deliver on his promise of economic recovery. Such deals would involve helping Iran revive...

  • *RUSSIAN ROUBLE OPENS 1.1 PERCENT UP AGAINST DOLLAR Tuesday, 3 Feb 2015 | 2:00 AM ET
  • "The auction results triggered worries that those who have long positions on bonds may unwind their positions and have a big impact on other asset classes," said Nobuhiko Kuramochi, a strategist at Mizuho Securities. Market participants also said that sentiment for global growth has been sour, with the European Central Bank recently easing policy and, in the...

  • The struggling firms have often been market outperformers in China as they were almost never delisted, providing an implicit floor on downside risk that speculators have exploited to their advantage. But China's broad efforts to reform its capital markets, and in particular recent rules aimed at fostering a robust stock market and efficient allocation of...

  • Profits, productivity and the pursuit of happiness Tuesday, 3 Feb 2015 | 1:00 AM ET

    *Financial services firms look at new ways to motivate staff. DUBLIN, Feb 3- There isn't much time for self-reflection when you are advising on company takeovers but at Irish corporate law firm William Fry they are giving themselves some serious thought. It is actually focusing on the things that you are good at and emphasizing their impact in your life, "said Shane...

  • Sanofi launches inhaled insulin for diabetics Tuesday, 3 Feb 2015 | 1:00 AM ET

    PARIS, Feb 3- Sanofi launched an inhalable insulin in the United States on Tuesday in a potential boost for its flagging diabetes drug sales and for patient quality of life. Developed by Mannkind Corp, Afrezza will be the only inhalable insulin on the U.S. market, where Sanofi competes with Eli Lilly and Novo Nordisk for sales of traditional injectable insulin.

  • MUMBAI, Feb 3- India's central bank held interest rates steady at 7.75 percent on Tuesday after easing monetary policy just three weeks ago, leaving its next move probably until after the government presents its annual budget at the end of this month. Instead, the Reserve Bank of India cut the statutory liquidity ratio- or the amount of bonds that lenders must set...

  • *MSCI's Asia-Pacific stock index down 0.2 percent. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan dipped 0.2 percent after the latest batch of weak U.S. data worsened worries about the state of the global economy. Spreadbetters saw hopes for an agreement on the Greek debt standoff lifting European stocks, forecasting Britain's FTSE to open up by...

  • JGBs tumble after surprisingly weak auction results Tuesday, 3 Feb 2015 | 12:32 AM ET

    TOKYO, Feb 3- Japanese government bond prices plunged on Tuesday after an auction of 10- year JGBs drew surprisingly weak bids, helping to lift the benchmark yield to a six-week high. The Ministry of Finance's auction of 2.4 trillion yen 10- year JGBs drew unexpectedly weak demand, producing the lowest accepted price of 99.42, compared to market expectations of...

  • Staples, Office Depot in advanced talks to merge - WSJ Tuesday, 3 Feb 2015 | 12:18 AM ET

    Feb 3- Office-supply chains Staples Inc and Office Depot Inc are in advanced talks to merge, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter. Staples has a market value of about $11 billion, while Office Depot has a market value of about $4.1 billion. Office Depot and Staples were not immediately available for comment outside regular U.S....

  • SINGAPORE, Feb 3- Oil futures continued to firm on Tuesday adding to gains of more than 11 percent in the prior two sessions, but persistent worries over China's demand outlook capped prices. OPEC delegates, though, said prices may stay depressed until summer due to weak seasonal demand even as Saudi Arabia's strategy of curbing the output growth of rival...

  • SAN FRANCISCO, Feb 2- Alibaba Group Holding Ltd is teaming with LendingClub Corp to offer financing to U.S. businesses to buy from Chinese suppliers, hoping to make it easier for American firms to tap the world's largest economy. LendingClub, an eight-year-old San Francisco startup, said it will provide its core service of matching small business borrowers with...

  • NEW DELHI/ WASHINGTON, Feb 3- A "breakthrough understanding" to open India's nuclear power sector to U.S. firms reached during President Barack Obama's visit to New Delhi last month could be finalized this year, Indian officials say. India wants to nearly treble its installed nuclear capacity, which would make it the world's second biggest market after China.

  • FACTBOX-The U.S.-India nuclear deal Monday, 2 Feb 2015 | 11:59 PM ET

    NEW DELHI, Feb 3- The nuclear "breakthrough understanding" between President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeks to allay U.S. concerns about industry liability and unlock billions of dollars in investments into Indian power projects. It seeks to set a framework for the U.S. nuclear industry to enter commercial talks on building nuclear...

  • SHANGHAI, Feb 3- China stocks rebounded on Tuesday after five straight days of losses, helped by energy and financials, after sentiment took a hit from worries over margin trading curbs and new listings. "The market is weak as blue chips recover from yesterday's losses," said Du Changchun, an analyst at Northeast Securities in Shanghai. But China's Minsheng Bank was...

  • SYDNEY, Feb 3- Australia's central bank cut its cash rate to an all-time trough of 2.25 percent on Tuesday, breaking an 18- month hiatus on stimulus as it seeks to spur a sluggish economy while keeping downward pressure on the local dollar. The currency duly sank more than a full U.S. cent after the Reserve Bank of Australia ended its first policy meeting of the year...

  • Feb 2- Amazon.com Inc and Sprint Corp are considering acquiring some RadioShack stores after the troubled electronics retailer files for bankruptcy, Bloomberg reported, citing people with knowledge of the discussions. Amazon has considered using the RadioShack stores as showcases for the Seattle- based company's hardware as well as potential pickup and...

  • TOKYO/ SYDNEY, Feb 3- The Australian dollar skidded more than one U.S. cent to a six-year low on Tuesday and plunged more than two percent against the yen after the Reserve Bank of Australia slashed interest rates to a record low. The Aussie dropped as far as $0.7650, from around $0.7790 before the central bank's announcement. Against the yen, the Aussie was down 2.2...

  • *MSCI's Asia-Pacific stock index down 0.1 percent. TOKYO, Feb 3- Asian stocks sagged on Tuesday amid lingering growth concerns, while the Australian dollar plumbed six-year lows after the Reserve Bank of Australia cut interest rates to a record low. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan dipped 0.1 percent after latest series of weak U.S....