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  • For Romney, Obama, a final jobs report fuels race Friday, 2 Nov 2012 | 7:43 AM ET

    COLUMBUS, Ohio-- In the final throes of a spirited campaign, President Barack Obama and rival Mitt Romney are awaiting one more measure of the nation's economic pulse _ a monthly jobs report that will leave an imprint on the last four frenetic days of the presidential contest.

  • *Factory activity in Asia perks up in Oct. SINGAPORE, Nov 2- Brent crude held steady near $108 a barrel on Friday as investors look ahead to key jobs data from the United States for more signs of economic recovery, which would boost fuel demand.

  • *Weak yen boosts exporters, with Honda up 3.3 pct. TOKYO, Nov 2- Japan's Nikkei share average climbed to a one-week high Friday as global cyclical shares such as carmakers rose on improved U.S. economic data. Honda Motor Co climbed 3.3 percent to 2,467 yen and Nissan Motor Co gained 2.1 percent.

  • HONG KONG, Nov 2- Hong Kong has no plans to change its currency peg against the U.S. dollar, a government official said on Friday, dismissing talk of the authorities rethinking policy after being forced into heavy sales of the Hong Kong dollar to curb its strength.

  • HONG KONG, Nov 2- China shares closed higher on Friday, posting their best week in a month, helped by strength in Chinese banks after official media reported that the central bank will redice reserve ratios for smaller banks if they meet loan-growth requirements.

  • BEIJING, Nov 2- Honda Motor Co Ltd's China car sales plunged 54 percent in October from a year earlier, marking the second monthly sales slump as Japanese automakers continue to suffer the backlash from a territorial dispute between Beijing and Tokyo.

  • *Fall through $1,710 to $1,712/ oz level triggers selling. SINGAPORE, Nov 2- Gold edged down towards $1,700 an ounce on Friday, after a fall through an important support level triggered some stop-loss selling as investors anxiously await a key U.S. labour market report.

  • TOKYO, Nov 2- Asian shares advanced to their highest in nearly two weeks with risk appetite returning on signs that a trend of global recovery is stabilising, particularly in the United States and China. European shares were also seen subdued, with financial spreadbetters expecting London's FTSE 100, Paris's CAC-40 and Frankfurt's DAX to open little changed.

  • Nikkei rises on hopes for U.S. economic recovery Friday, 2 Nov 2012 | 6:06 AM ET

    TOKYO, Nov 2- Japan's Nikkei share average climbed to a one-week high on Friday as global cyclical shares like carmakers rose on improved U.S. economic data. The Nikkei rose 1.2 percent to 9,051.22, ending above the 9,000 mark for the first time in a week. The broader Topix index also added 1.2 percent to 752.09.

  • HONG KONG, Nov 2- Hong Kong shares jumped to their highest level in 15 months on Friday, as fund inflows into the Chinese territory buoyed hopes of further gains leading into the year's end and encouraged investors to build riskier positions.

  • CANBERRA, Nov 2- The closure of Australia's Autodom Ltd, a top Australian auto parts supplier, could shut down production at local units of Ford and General Motors by next week and executives are working frantically to save the company.

  • New Zealand carbon scheme on hold as prices plunge Friday, 2 Nov 2012 | 5:41 AM ET

    *New Zealand carbon prices plummet. WELLINGTON, Nov 2- Just two years after expanding a scheme that was feted as the world's only emissions trading scheme outside of Europe, New Zealand has effectively put the scheme on hold, just as other nations step into the carbon trading arena.

  • PBOC slows yuan rise with weaker fix for second day Friday, 2 Nov 2012 | 5:23 AM ET

    *China cenbank intervention stems yuan rise, traders say. SHANGHAI, Nov 2- China's central bank tightened its grip on yuan appreciation with a second straight weaker midpoint fixing on Friday, pushing the yuan slightly lower, but traders said demand for the currency remained robust. The People's Bank of China has kept the midpoint virtually flat since Oct. 17.

  • *Sony shares gain 3 pct after rise in quarterly profit. TOKYO/ HONG KONG, Nov 2- Shares of Japan's Sharp Corp fell on Friday as worries about the TV and display maker's future deepened a day after it warned of a $5.6 billion net loss for this year and said it might not be able to survive on its own.

  • *Residents of hard-hit Staten Island complain of being ignored. NEW YORK, Nov 2- From New York City's Staten Island to the popular beach towns of the Jersey Shore, rescuers and officials on Friday faced growing evidence of widespread destruction wrought by superstorm Sandy, mounting anger over delayed relief and a rising death toll.

  • SAN FRANCISCO, Nov 1- Two weeks before trial in a high-stakes lawsuit pitting Google's Motorola Mobility unit against Microsoft, Google made what has become a common request for a tech company fighting for billions of dollars: a public court proceeding conducted largely in secret.

  • SINGAPORE, Nov 2- Brent crude slipped below $108 a barrel on Friday as investors look ahead to key jobs data from the United States for more signs of economic recovery, which would boost fuel demand.

  • PRECIOUS-Gold edges down ahead of US jobs data Friday, 2 Nov 2012 | 4:03 AM ET

    *Spot gold may fall to $1,698.39/ oz- technicals.

  • WASHINGTON, Nov 2- The U.S. unemployment rate probably rose in October as employers stepped up hiring only slightly, underscoring President Barack Obama's vulnerability in next week's presidential election.

  • Nov 1- Newmont Mining Corp, the world's second-largest gold producer, reported a lower-than-expected quarterly profit after a steep fall in production and a sharp rise in costs at its big Batu Hijau copper and gold mine in Indonesia.