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  • May 20- Hong Kong stocks ended mixed on Wednesday, with the benchmark Hang Seng index sagging but an index tracking Chinese companies firmer, helped by strength in mainland stocks. Trading in shares of China's Hanergy Thin Film Power Group was suspended after its stock plunged nearly 50 percent in less than one hour- a sudden and brutal decline after a long run-up...

  • *JP Morgan, Citigroup, RBS and Barclays next in firing line. ZURICH/ NEW YORK, May 20- UBS will plead guilty to rigging benchmark interest rates and pay $545 million to U.S. authorities to settle their probe into alleged manipulation of foreign exchange rates. The Swiss bank's payment is part of what is expected to be a combined $5 billion settlement by five of the...

  • FOREX-Dollar surges for third day, eyes on Fed and Greece Wednesday, 20 May 2015 | 3:54 AM ET

    *Euro falls to three-week low of $1.1062. LONDON, May 20- The dollar scaled a three-week high against the euro and a two-month peak against the yen on Wednesday, ending its weakest run against the single currency in four years with an almost four-cent advance this week. The euro, hammered on Tuesday by signs the European Central Bank is prepared to do more to drive...

  • JAKARTA, May 20- Indonesia's central bank must strike the right balance between the needs for stronger growth and stability in Southeast Asia's largest economy, Governor Agus Martowardojo said on Wednesday. "We are still headed for a bumpy road ahead," he said, adding that Bank Indonesia would improve its coordination with the government. There's a "need to strike...

  • MUNICH, May 20- A hike in U.S. interest rates is not likely to be appropriate until early 2016, Chicago Federal Reserve President Charles Evans said on Wednesday. "Inflation is too low," Evans told an audience in Munich. Evans argued for rates to start rising in early 2016 in a speech in Stockholm on Monday, though he also said the Fed could look at a hike in June if the...

  • PARIS, May 20- French telecommunications group Altice SA said it agreed to buy Suddenlink Communications in a deal valuing the company at $9.1 billion to enter the fast-growing U.S. cable sector. Altice is buying 70 percent of Suddenlink from existing shareholders BC Partners, CPP Investment Board and Suddenlink management, it said in a statement on Wednesday.

  • SHANGHAI/ HONG KONG, May 20- Russell Investment Management and China's Ping An Insurance Group said they have terminated their investment joint venture after four years, the latest sign of friction between foreign fund managers and their Chinese partners. "Going forward, Russell Investments and Ping An Group have mutually agreed to change the ownership...

  • *Shanghai nickel tumbles 5 pct to hit daily floor. SINGAPORE, May 20- London nickel futures dropped to their lowest in nearly a month on Wednesday and those in Shanghai slid 5 percent amid abundant supply that could keep prices under pressure. "Without support from the demand side, nickel prices will fall further," said Peter Peng, analyst at CRU Group in Beijing.

  • UPDATE 1-Burberry shares slide on lower 2016 outlook Wednesday, 20 May 2015 | 3:09 AM ET

    LONDON, May 20- British luxury goods maker Burberry lowered its 2016 retail and wholesale profit guidance due to foreign exchange movements and said it was seeing increased uncertainty in some markets, taking the shine off forecast-beating results. For its full-year results, Burberry said it had seen significant impact from exchange rates, reducing...

  • Altice enters US cable market with Suddenlink buy Wednesday, 20 May 2015 | 2:58 AM ET

    French telecommunications group Altice said it agreed to buy Suddenlink Communications in a deal valuing the company at $9.1 billion.

  • ATHENS, May 20- Greece will not be able to make a payment to the International Monetary Fund that falls due on June 5 without a deal with its international lenders, the government's parliamentary speaker said on Wednesday. Athens faces several payments totaling about 1.5 billion euros to the IMF next month and is in talks with the European Union and the...

  • BEIJING, May 20- China will spend more than $182 billion to boost Internet speeds by the end of 2017, a top government body said, as Beijing moves towards a more service-driven economy to boost growth. China ranked 82nd in the world for average Internet connection speed, slower than Malaysia, Thailand and Taiwan, according to cloud computing services provider...

  • *Gold hits 1- week low after sharp 1.5 percent overnight loss. SINGAPORE, May 20- Gold slid to its lowest in a week on Wednesday, extending steep overnight losses triggered by a stronger dollar and stock market, with traders now waiting for minutes of the Federal Reserve's policy meet for clues on the U.S. rate outlook. Spot gold fell 0.3 percent to $1,204 an ounce by...

  • TOKYO, May 20- Japanese stocks closed at a 15- year peak on Wednesday, helped by data showing a surprisingly rapid pace of domestic economic growth in the January-March quarter. The Nikkei share average rose 0.9 percent to 20,196.56, its highest close since April 2000, while the broader Topix rose 0.6 percent to 1,643.40, its best since October 2007.

  • TOKYO, May 20- Asian shares slipped on Wednesday after a mixed day on Wall Street, though Japan's better-than-expected economic growth lifted the Nikkei to a 15- year high. The dollar scaled a two-month high against the yen after upbeat U.S. housing data, and as the euro remained pressured by expectations that the European Central Bank would increase its...

  • UPDATE 1-M&S profit rises for first time in four years Wednesday, 20 May 2015 | 2:31 AM ET

    LONDON, May 20- British retailer Marks& Spencer posted its first rise in annual profit in four years and said it would return excess cash to shareholders, fueling hopes that it has finally rediscovered a successful formula. Britain's biggest clothing retailer, which also sells homewares and upmarket food, said on Wednesday it made a profit before tax and one-off...

  • Burberry sounds cautious note after seeing profit rise Wednesday, 20 May 2015 | 2:23 AM ET

    LONDON, May 20- British luxury goods maker Burberry posted a 7 percent rise in underlying full-year pretax profit on Wednesday, beating analyst expectations, but cautioned it was seeing increased uncertainty in some of its markets. Burberry, which is known for its raincoats with camel, red and black-check patterned linings, posted pretax profit of 456 million...

  • Euro hits 2-week low on anxiety over Greek debt Wednesday, 20 May 2015 | 2:19 AM ET

    SINGAPORE, May 20- The euro fell on Wednesday after the Greek government's parliamentary speaker said Greece will not make a repayment to the International Monetary Fund that falls due on June 5 if there is no deal with its creditors by then. The euro extended its losses and hit a two-week low near $1.1092 at one point. It last traded at $1.1103, down 0.4 percent on...

  • Wednesday's settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice, the Federal Reserve, and the Connecticut Department of Banking follows a settlement UBS reached six months ago with Swiss financial regulator FINMA, which included a fine and bonus curbs. "The conduct of a small number of employees was unacceptable and we have taken appropriate disciplinary actions,"...

  • M&S profit rises for first time in four years Wednesday, 20 May 2015 | 2:11 AM ET

    LONDON, May 20- British retailer Marks& Spencer posted its first rise in annual profit in four years and said it would return excess cash to shareholders, fueling hopes that it has finally rediscovered a successful formula. Britain's biggest clothing retailer, which also sells homewares and upmarket food, said on Wednesday it made a profit before tax and one-off...