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  • Nov 2- Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc is to buy direct marketing toy and party supplies merchant Oriental Trading Co for $500 million, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday, citing a person involved in the deal. Berkshire Hathaway and Oriental Trading Co were not available for comment outside regular U.S. business hours.

  • Delta says Sandy cut revenue by $45 million Friday, 2 Nov 2012 | 9:34 AM ET

    NEW YORK-- Delta Air Lines says Superstorm Sandy cut its revenue by $45 million last month as it was forced to cancel more than 3,500 flights. The Atlanta company, the world's second-largest airline after United, said its October profit was reduced by about $20 million.

  • UK construction ekes out growth in Oct - Markit Friday, 2 Nov 2012 | 9:30 AM ET

    LONDON, Nov 2- LONDON, Nov 2- The. However, new orders fell for the fifth straight month- the longest period of decline since the 2008-2009 recession- and firms reduced headcount at the fastest pace since August 2011. ``The bigger picture remains bleak,'' said Tim Moore, senior economist at Markit, which compiles the survey.

  • *Focus on U.S. payrolls data but trader positioning light. LONDON, Nov 2- German Bund futures rose on Monday, testing the top of their recent range but many investors shied away from taking large positions before U.S. jobs data and with Greece again facing crisis.

  • UPDATE 2-RBS faces fines to settle Libor probe Friday, 2 Nov 2012 | 9:24 AM ET

    *Q3 operating profit 1.05 bln stg vs 2 mln yr ago. LONDON, Nov 2- Royal Bank of Scotland said it may face fines in relation to how it set Libor and other interest rates and is keen to settle the matter as soon as possible.

  • SHANGHAI, Nov 2- China's yuan ended slightly weaker on Friday even after hitting the strong-side boundary of its daily trading band for a fourth straight day, as China's central bank tightened its grip on the currency with the weakest midpoint fix in over a week.

  • PARIS, Nov 2- Telecom equipment maker Alcatel-Lucent may sell assets to strengthen its balance sheet after posting a second straight quarterly loss as its customers around the world cut spending on mobile and fixed networks.

  • *China equity fund inflows highest this year: EPFR Global. *Galaxy Entertainment at record high on Oct gambling revenue. HONG KONG, Nov 2- Hong Kong shares had their best week in seven, with the Hang Seng Index hitting a 15- month high as fund inflows buoyed hopes of more gains before year's end, encouraging investors to build riskier positions.

  • BEIJING/ SHANGHAI, Nov 2- Honda Motor Co Ltd's China car sales plunged 54 percent in October from a year earlier, with the pace of decline accelerating from the previous month as Japanese automakers suffer the backlash from a territorial dispute between Beijing and Tokyo.

  • *Yen hampered by Japan's trade deficit, economic woes. LONDON, Nov 2- The dollar rose to a near four month-high against the yen on Friday as investors bet on an upbeat U.S. payrolls report after private employers added jobs at the fastest pace in eight months.

  • *USA and Japan also need fiscal consolidation. BERLIN, Nov 2- The United States and Japan must share responsibility with Europe for ensuring global economic stability, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said, signalling that a G20 meeting this weekend should not focus solely on the euro zone crisis.

  • LONDON, Nov 2- Euro zone manufacturing shrank for the 15th month running in October as output and new orders fell, a survey showed on Friday, likely fuelling expectations of further easing from the European Central Bank.

  • *Alcatel down, Beiersdorf up in mixed earnings season.

  • *Economy contracts in Q3, for the first time since 2009. KIEV, Nov 2- Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich's ruling party finds itself with a small window of opportunity to carry out painful but badly needed changes to streamline the economy.

  • TOKYO, Nov 2- Japan looks poised to avoid falling off its own version of a' fiscal cliff' after the main opposition party signalled it will no longer hold a critical deficit financing bill hostage to its push for an early election.

  • The FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares opened broadly flat at 1109.98 points, with London's FTSE 100, Paris's CAC-40 and Frankfurt's DAX mixed as investors opted for caution ahead of the U.S. data.

  • Ahead of the Bell: TripAdvisor, Priceline Friday, 2 Nov 2012 | 8:31 AM ET

    Shares of TripAdvisor and Priceline.com jumped before the opening bell Friday after both surprised investors Thursday with better-than-expected third-quarter profit. Priceline.com Inc.' s profit grew 27 percent as customers made more travel bookings on its website.

  • HONG KONG, Nov 2- Hong Kong shares had their best week in seven on Friday, with the Hang Seng Index hitting a 15- month high as fund inflows buoyed hopes of further gains by year-end and encouraged investors to build riskier positions. The China Enterprises Index of the top Chinese listings in Hong Kong rose 1.2 percent on the day and 3.7 percent this week.

  • Europe shares steady, eye gains post U.S. jobs data Friday, 2 Nov 2012 | 8:04 AM ET

    LONDON, Nov 2- European equities steadied on Friday but could test recent two-week highs if U.S. jobs data reassures on the health of the world's biggest economy.

  • LONDON, Nov 2- Royal Bank of Scotland said it may face ``material fines'' in relation to how Libor and other interest rates were set after talks with regulators which it expects to begin soon.