BEIJING, Sept 18- Average new home prices in China's 70 major cities fell 1.1 percent in August from July, a fourth consecutive monthly drop, according to Reuters calculations from official data published on Thursday.» Read More
*Pension fund says San Bernardino has no plan. Oct 24- America's biggest public pension system filed a formal objection on Wednesday to a quest by San Bernardino to seek bankruptcy protection, citing the ``disarray'' in the Californian city's finances. San Bernardino, a city of 210,000 people 60 miles east of Los Angeles, declared bankruptcy on Aug. 1.
PARIS-- French beverage company Pernod Ricard says sales for the most recent quarter grew 11 percent, driven by slowing but still strong demand in emerging markets. Sales in its home market of France continued to decline and Europe was flat, but Asia and the Americas picked up the slack.
FRANKFURT, Germany-- Chemicals and oil company BASF SE says profits fell 21 percent in the third quarter as its chemicals business suffered from lower demand and troubles at a key Texas facility. Stronger oil sales helped soften the blow now that now that the company's facilities in Libya are working again after being shut down by fighting last year.
NEW YORK, Oct 24- Chile is trying to weaken its currency to close a recent spate of monthly trade deficits but accommodative monetary policies in the developed world have made the mission difficult, Chilean Finance Minister Felipe Larrain said on Wednesday.
*Sees strong performance at Meadowbank mine in Canada. Oct 24- Canada's Agnico-Eagle Mines Ltd reported a quarterly profit on record gold production on Wednesday and boosted its output forecast for the year by 5 percent.
GENEVA-- Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis AG has posted third-quarter profits virtually unchanged from the comparable period a year ago. The Basel- based company says it had profits of 2.48 billion Swiss francs between July and September, compared with $2.49 billion in the third quarter of 2011..
"Hyundai is set to recover its lost output during the third quarter with increased capacity in China, Brazil and the United States as well as in South Korea.
Benchmark crude for December delivery was up 24 cents to $85.97 per barrel at midday Bangkok time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract dropped 94 cents, or about 1 percent, to finish at $85.73 per barrel.
GENEVA-- Credit Suisse Group said Thursday its third-quarter net profit dropped by more than half from a year ago, hit by an accounting charge from the bank's own debt.
SEOUL, South Korea-- South Korea's flagship carrier Korean Air said Thursday it returned to profit after two straight quarters of losses as increased international passengers and a favorable exchange rate offset lower cargo shipments.
HOUSTON-- Retail gasoline prices have taken a tumble this week across Texas. AAA Texas on Thursday reported the statewide average price fell 12 cents to settle at $3.39 per gallon. The association survey found El Paso has the most expensive gasoline in Texas at $3.49 per gallon.
Mark Griffiths, professor of gambling studies at Nottingham Trent University, told a few hundred participants at a conference sponsored by the Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling that technology will make gambling more accessible as gamblers turn to online sites and avoid casinos.
ROCK HILL, S.C.-- 3 D Systems Corp. said Thursday that its third-quarter net income doubled as printer sales soared. 3 D Systems earned $13.5 million, or 24 cents per share, for the period ended Sept. 30. That compares with $7.2 million, or 14 cents per share, a year ago.
FRANKFORT, Ky.-- A new report on unemployment is showing continued improvement in most Kentucky counties. Calloway, Fayette, Franklin, Jessamine, Madison, Oldham, Scott, Shelby and Warren counties were between 6 percent and 6.4 percent. The coalfield counties of Bell, Harlan, Jackson, Leslie, Letcher, Knott, Perry and Wolfe all were between 12.3 percent and 13.7 percent.
SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine-- One of the Maine's largest publicly traded companies is changing its name. Wright Express Corp. announced Thursday that its new name is WEX Inc.. The company will continue to be listed under the symbol WXS on the New York Stock Exchange.
YORK, Pa.-- Dentsply reported a 12 percent decline in third quarter earnings Thursday as selling and administrative costs rose for the dental products company. The company narrowed its full-year earnings expectations to a range of $2.19 to $2.24 from the prior range of $2.18 to $2.24. Shares of Dentsply International Inc., based in York, Pa., rose 41 cents to $37.12.
BISMARCK, N.D.-- North Dakota's Mineral Resources director says he likely will make a recommendation to state regulators next month on whether to allow oil drilling near the Killdeer Mountains Wildlife Management Area. Hess Corp. wants to drill up to eight wells. The Mineral Resources Department's Oil and Gas Division on Wednesday held a hearing.
LAS VEGAS-- The Las Vegas area is getting further away from its dubious title as foreclosure capital of the country. Realtytrac reports one in every 139 housing units in Las Vegas saw some sort of foreclosure filing in the third quarter.
CHARLESTON, W.Va.-- The United Mine Workers of America is suing Arch Coal Inc. and Peabody Energy Corp. in southern West Virginia over pension and health-care benefits for bankrupt Patriot Coal Corp.' s active and retired miners.
SINGAPORE, Oct 25- Gold edged up in thin trade on Thursday as the U.S. dollar trimmed gains, although the metal was still within sight of its weakest in seven weeks, hit after the U.S. *Gold had added $4.86 an ounce to $1,706.79 by 0025 GMT.