*Exports hobbled by China, Korea's biggest market. Australia and New Zealand Banking Group cut its forecast for South Korea's 2015 economic growth by half a percentage point to 2.2 percent, which would be the slowest growth since 2009. ING cut its projection to 2.3 percent from the previous 2.5 percent. The Bank of Korea's monetary policy committee next reviews...» Read More
TOKYO, Oct 24- U.S. crude futures steadied below $87 a barrel in early Asian trade on Wednesday as investors waited for data on China's economic health, after weak corporate earnings and forecasts pointed to a still distressed global economy.
NEW YORK-- Shares of Dow Chemical Co. jumped Wednesday after the manufacturing giant said it will close some 20 manufacturing facilities and eliminate 2,400 jobs in an effort to cut costs in the slow global economy.
LOS ANGELES, Oct 23- Netflix Inc added fewer U.S. customers than Wall Street expected in the third quarter, forcing the company to roll back its year-end subscriber forecast and sending shares plunging 15 percent.
PARIS-- The extent of the European car industry's troubles was laid bare Wednesday, when France's government tossed a financial lifeline to the continent's No. 2 automaker, Peugeot Citroen, and Ford said it would shut a plant in Belgium, cutting 9,500 jobs.
BALTIMORE-- Financial services firm T. Rowe Price Group Inc. reported a better-than-expected 25 percent increase in third-quarter profit Wednesday, buoyed by stock-market gains that resulted in a big jump in revenue from investment advisory fees.
FORD RETREATS: After an extended sales slump in Europe, Ford announced the closure of its factory in in eastern Belgium _ one of its main European factories. Ford expects to lose more than $1 billion this year in Europe. HUMAN TOLL: Ford's factory in Genk Ford Genk represents more than 30 percent of the car production in Belgium.
NEW YORK-- The NHL's New York Islanders have agreed to move to Brooklyn's Barclays Center from Long Island as early as 2015, a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press on Wednesday. Islanders owner Charles Wang and developer Bruce Ratner were among those scheduled to be at the news conference.
NEW YORK-- Shares of Newfield Exploration Co. fell Wednesday after the oil and gas company reported a third-quarter loss due to declining value of derivatives. THE SPARK: The company reported late Tuesday that it lost $33 million, or 24 cents per share, in the July-to-September period.
The national average for a gallon of gas has dropped 13 cents in the past week to $3.625. That's the biggest weekly decline since the 7- day period ended Nov. 28, 2008, according to Oil Price Information Services analyst Fred Rozell. Rozell says gas has averaged $3.65 so far this year, 10 cents above the record set in 2011..
*HSBC flash China manufacturing PMI due around 0145 GMT. Asian markets will also focus on HSBC's latest report on China's manufacturing sector due around 0145 GMT, with any negative surprise likely to further hurt fragile sentiment. The MSCI index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan eased 0.3 percent on Wednesday.
LONDON-- Cooks, cleaners and dozens of other female workers won a key equal pay ruling at Britain's High Court on Wednesday in a case which lawyers say will effectively extend the amount of time people in this country have to file such claims.
ATHENS, Greece-- Greece's Finance Minister said the country has been granted a long-sought extension to meet the terms of its bailout program _ but the claim was swiftly shot down as "speculation" by the European Central Bank and lead lender Germany.
FALLS CHURCH, Va.-- General Dynamics said Wednesday that its third-quarter net income fell 8 percent, as higher costs more than offset a modest revenue increase. The Falls Church, Va., aerospace and defense company earned $600 million, or $1.70 per share, down from $652 million, or $1.80 per share, in the same quarter last year.
DALLAS-- Consumer products company Kimberly-Clark net income rose 20 percent, helped by cost cuts and lower costs for commodities like fiber and other raw materials. The company, which makes Kleenex tissue and Huggies diapers, also raised its earnings projection for the year and said it was ending some diaper operations in Europe.
TOKYO, Oct 24- Japan's Nikkei share average dropped at Wednesday's open after poor U.S. earnings increased uneasiness about the outlook for local companies, and looked set to break its seven-day winning streak despite hopes for a policy easing by the Bank of Japan.
BERLIN-- A German discount clothing chain says it will pay $500,000 to the relatives of some 260 workers who died in a blaze at a factory in Pakistan last month. The payment amounts to less than $2,000 for each victim at the Karachi factory where workers produced garments for German company KiK and others.
THE OUTCOME: Third-quarter profit more than doubles for biotech drugmaker Amgen Inc., mainly because of a $780 million legal charge a year earlier to settle investigations into kickbacks and marketing practices. THE NUMBERS: Net income was $1.11 billion, or $1.41 per share, up from $454 million, or 50 cents a share.
*iPad mini is Apple's first foray into small tablets. SAN JOSE, Oct 23- Apple Inc will begin to sell an 8- inch version of the iPad on Friday to compete with Amazon.com Inc's Kindle and other smaller tablets, but it set a higher-than-expected price tag of $329 that Wall Street fears could curb demand.
A proposed settlement of a national class-action lawsuit, filed Oct. 16 in U.S. District Court in Vermont, says the government will revise its Medicare manual to make benefits available when care would only ``maintain the patient's current condition or... prevent or slow further deterioration''.