SINTRA, Portugal— What's behind Europe's sluggish recovery and high jobless rate? The European Central Bank convened some of the world's most prominent economists Thursday through Saturday to probe those questions at the Penha Longa golf resort set amid steep, densely forested hills near the town of Sintra, Portugal, near the Atlantic Ocean.» Read More
Oct 31- Five months before an election that will be crucial not just for this country but the whole euro zone, Italy is mired in some of its greatest political uncertainty since World War Two. Here is a look at recent governments in Italy:. Berlusconi complains of irregularities but Supreme Court upholds result on April 19.
ABU DHABI, Oct 31- Abu Dhabi's Advanced Technology Investment Co expects to earn its first profit by 2015 as it scales up operations overseas, but plans to set up a chip manufacturing facility at home remain on hold, its chief executive said on Wednesday.
Oct 31- More than 5.9 million homes and businesses along the U.S. East Coast remained without power on Wednesday morning after Hurricane Sandy battered the region. Sandy made landfall in New Jersey on Monday night. Power companies have reported a peak of nearly 8.5 million customers without power, according to a U.S. Department of Energy report.
CHICAGO, Oct 31- U.S. lumber futures soared on Wednesday on expectations for demand to increase in the aftermath of monster storm Sandy that caused massive flooding in the northeastern United States, damaging numerous homes that would need rebuilding.
Oct 31- MasterCard Inc, the No.2 credit and debit card network, reported a quarterly profit that topped Wall Street estimates as more people across the globe opted to use cards instead of cash. Higher consumer spending in the United States also helped to boost MasterCard's third-quarter profit.
*BG blames Brazil tie-ins, Egypt, North Sea, U.S. for shortfall. *Agrees $1.93 deal with China's CNOOC. LONDON, Oct 31- British oil and gas firm BG Group told investors to expect no output growth in 2013 due to project delays and other factors, prompting a dive in its highly rated share price that wiped out as much as a fifth of its value.
NEW YORK, Oct 31- The euro rose against the dollar on Wednesday and was headed for its third straight month of gains as U.S. stocks rose after a two-day closure for Hurricane Sandy, denting safe-haven demand for the U.S. currency. On Wall Street, the Dow and S&P 500 rose at the open as equity markets reopened following a damaging storm in the U.S.
Oct 31- Storage device maker Seagate Technology Plc reported a first-quarter profit below analysts' expectations and forecast weak current-quarter revenue, hurt by slowing PC sales and lower prices. Seagate shipped 57.6 million hard drives during the quarter ended Sept. 28, down from 66 million in the April-June quarter.
DETROIT, Oct 31- General Motors Co is targeting $500 million in fixed-cost savings between 2013 and 2015 and plans to make further job cuts in Europe as it seeks to break-even in the region by mid-decade, GM said on Wednesday. The Detroit- based automaker posted a surprisingly strong quarterly profit and said it was targeting breaking even in Europe in mid-decade.
*GM expects much bigger loss in Europe this year. *Still sees Europe economy flat to slightly deteriorating. ``We still have a lot of work to do, especially in Europe,'' GM Chief Financial Officer Dan Ammann said in a statement.
TORONTO, Oct 31- Potash Corp of Saskatchewan acknowledged on Wednesday that it has held talks with Israeli government officials around potentially increasing its ownership stake in Israel Chemical Ltd.
*U.S. stocks higher as Wall Street reopens after 2- day closure. LONDON, Oct 31- World shares and the euro edged up on Wednesday as a storm-hit Wall Street began trading after its two-day closure and investors looked ahead to economic data later in the week.
*Ford, Home Depot among the biggest gainers. Among the biggest gainers of the day were Ford Motor Co, which reported strong results during the market closure, and Home Depot, which rallied as people bought supplies to repair storm damage.
BUENOS AIRES, Oct 31- Telecom Argentina SA, one of Argentina's top telecommunications companies, reported on Wednesday that its third-quarter net profit rose 2.1 percent from a year before, thanks to hefty sales.
ANCHORAGE, Alaska-- Royal Dutch Shell PLC has concluded drilling for the season in the Arctic Ocean off Alaska's northwest and north coast. Shell Alaska spokesman Curtis Smith says the company completed one top hole in both the Chukchi and Beaufort seas. Top holes are the foundation of an exploratory well.
KETTERING, Ohio- President Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney briefly put aside their fierce battle for the White House on Tuesday, avoiding politics to focus on relief efforts after mammoth storm Sandy left millions of Americans struggling to recover.
KHARTOUM, Oct 31- After a Sudanese plane crashed at Khartoum's international airport last year, authorities didn't slow plans to build new airports and add more routes. They used the incident to shoot a video showing how safe flying in Sudan is, thanks to its skillful pilots.
CHICAGO, Oct 31- Business activity in the U.S. Midwest contracted for a second month in October, a report showed on Wednesday, although the forward-looking measure for new orders rose. The Institute for Supply Management-Chicago business barometer rose slightly to 49.9, from 49.7 in September.
Oct 31- Facebook Inc shares fell 4 percent to $21.07 in busy early trade on Wednesday morning on the company's approval to let employees sell some stock. As a result, Facebook staffers were able to sell their vested shares on Oct. 29.
*OPEC crude oil output rises slightly in October- survey. LONDON, Oct 31- Brent crude rose above $109 a barrel on Wednesday as the U.S. East Coast began to pick itself up from a massive storm, but gains were capped by concerns over the demand impact on the world's largest oil consumer.