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  • DETROIT, Dec 3- As early as 2003, Takata Corp ran an investigation into an air bag inflator that ruptured in a BMW vehicle, but concluded the problem was an anomaly, the company said on Tuesday, ahead of a second U.S. congressional hearing on dangerous air bags it supplied. Hiroshi Shimizu, Takata's chief quality officer, told a Senate committee hearing last month...

  • TORONTO, Dec 3- Royal Bank of Canada reported a stronger fourth-quarter profit on Wednesday as gains at its core personal and commercial banking and wealth management businesses offset weakness at its capital markets arm. Canada's largest bank reported net income of C $2.3 billion, or C $1.57 a share on a fully diluted basis, for the fourth-quarter ended Oct. 31,...

  • WASHINGTON, Dec 3- Washington thinks China has so far lived up its commitment to move toward a market-determined exchange rate, a senior U.S. economic diplomat said in a speech on Wednesday. The United States has long pressured China to let its yuan currency appreciate, which the U.S. "If China continues to live up to this commitment, as it has in the months since the,...

  • NEW YORK, Dec 3- U.S. private employers added 208,000 jobs in November, falling short of economists' expectations, a report by a payrolls processor showed on Wednesday. "The labor market continues to make steady progress," Ahu Yildirmaz, vice president and head of the ADP Research Institute, said on a conference call following the data's release.

  • ADMA's immune deficiency drug meets main goal Wednesday, 3 Dec 2014 | 8:36 AM ET

    Dec 3- Drugmaker ADMA Biologics Inc said its drug to treat immune deficiency was found to be effective in a late-stage study. The drug, RI-002, met the main goal of preventing serious bacterial infections in patients with primary immune deficiency disease. Trading in the company's shares were halted ahead of the announcement and had not resumed as of 08:34 a.m....

  • *Gold recovers from Tuesday's 1 pct drop. LONDON, Dec 3- Gold rose above $1,200 an ounce, boosted by firmer oil prices on Wednesday that prompted investors to shuffle positions in a volatile market. Gold gained about 10 percent in the first half of the year, helped by geopolitical tensions and disappointing U.S. economic data, before surrendering to a rallying...

  • U.S. Q3 productivity revised up, wages slashed Wednesday, 3 Dec 2014 | 8:30 AM ET

    WASHINGTON, Dec 3- U.S. nonfarm productivity grew a bit faster than initially thought in the third quarter, while sharp downward revisions to compensation pointed to muted wage inflation that should give the Federal Reserve room to keep interest rates low for a while. The Labor Department said on Wednesday productivity expanded at a 2.3 percent annual rate...

  • NEW YORK, Dec 3- U.S. private employers added 208,000 jobs in November, below economists' expectations, a report by a payrolls processor showed on Wednesday. The ADP figures come ahead of the U.S. Labor Department's more comprehensive nonfarm payrolls report on Friday, which includes both public and private sector employment. The unemployment rate is seen...

  • LONDON, Dec 3- Strong demand for smartphones and automotive electronics has boosted growth for the semiconductor industry this year, as a global industry association said results for 2014 were set to have beaten forecasts with further modest growth expected. Even Microchip Technology, which sent shudders through global markets in October by warning of a...

  • Five months before a national election, Osborne said Britain's deficit would fall to 5.0 percent of gross domestic product in the 2014/ 15 financial year. That compared with a forecast of 4.9 percent made in March by Britain's independent budget office. The slightly slower pace of improvement largely reflects how Britain's strong economic recovery has not...

  • AK YAYLA, Turkmenistan, Dec 3- Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Iran on Wednesday inaugurated a new railway route that will improve resource-rich Central Asia's access to markets in the Middle East and South Asia. "These are just our first steps," Iranian President Hassan Rouhani told a ceremony in Turkmenistan which marked the end of the building of the final...

  • If OPEC cannot act to defend the prices and revenues of its member countries, does the organisation still serve any purpose? There is an assumption among some commentators that OPEC is only relevant and working if ministers can reach a production agreement in response to shifts in prices, and that strong disagreement is a sign of dysfunction.

  • Dec 3- Struggling apparel retailer Abercrombie& Fitch Co cut its full-year profit forecast as higher discounts and efforts to refresh its merchandise by dropping the logo-centric approach failed to attract young customers. Abercrombie, which has most of its stores in malls, has been hurt also as fewer people visit malls in North America and Europe and prefer...

  • *Lower oil price, weak economy may cost budget $180 billion. MOSCOW, Dec 3- As Russia grapples with the impact of plunging energy prices and a contracting economy on its government finances, painful cuts in state spending have become unavoidable. But rather than touch sizeable defence and social expenditures backed by President Vladimir Putin, the axe is most...

  • SAO PAULO, Dec 3- In a sign of the distortions plaguing Brazil's stagnant economy, a wide range of companies are sharply cutting back output of their main products to instead sell electricity back into the national grid because it is more profitable. Usiminas, Brazil's biggest producer of flat steel, said in its latest earnings report that revenues from...

  • *OPEC oil supply falls 340,000 bpd in Nov due to Libya- survey. Brent hit a five-year low below $68 a barrel on Monday after averaging around $110 a barrel in 2011 to 2013. "There has been a technical bounce back from the very strong declines that we have seen in the lead-up to and after the OPEC meeting," said Harry Tchilinguirian, an oil analyst at BNP Paribas in London.

  • Dec 3- Cliffs Natural Resources Inc said it expects to record a pretax loss of $375 million to $425 million on the sale of its Logan County coal assets in West Virginia in the fourth quarter. The miner said on Wednesday it would sell the assets to Coronado Coal II LLC for $175 million in cash along with the assumption of certain liabilities. Deutsche Bank Securities...

  • KIEV, Dec 3- Ukraine's energy authorities said on Wednesday that an accident at a nuclear power plant in Zaporizhzhya in the south-east of the country posed no danger and the plant would return to normal operations on Dec. 5. In Vienna, the International Atomic Energy Agency said it had no immediate comment on the report. Ukraine, Belarus and Russia, have estimated...

  • SPECIAL REPORT-How Exxon helped make Iraqi Kurdistan Wednesday, 3 Dec 2014 | 7:31 AM ET

    LONDON/ ARBIL, Dec 3- In January 2011, Exxon hired one of the best connected men in Iraq: Ali Khedery, an American of Iraqi descent who had served in Baghdad as a special assistant to five U.S. ambassadors and a senior adviser to three U.S. generals. "We will see a rise in violence and a total paralysis in Baghdad," he recalled saying. He suggested an alternative: Kurdistan, a...

  • Washington keeps pressure on Japan over fiscal stimulus Wednesday, 3 Dec 2014 | 7:30 AM ET

    WASHINGTON, Dec 3- The United States called on Japan to keep fiscal support in place for its flagging economy and said there was an "urgent case" for structural reforms to spur faster economic growth. The Treasury Department's top official for international affairs noted that Japan had postponed a planned tax hike, taking some pressure off its economy, which fell...