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  • UPDATE 1-Argentina to start 2015 with lapdogs flying high Wednesday, 31 Dec 2014 | 6:54 PM ET

    BUENOS AIRES, Dec 31- Argentine President Cristina Fernandez chose an unexpected theme for her year-end message to the country: a change in policy at the state-run airline to allow passengers to carry their already notoriously-pampered lapdogs with them on flights. Hand-held pooches ranging from Shih Tzu's to Pugs are a common sight at outdoor cafes and on...

  • The film, blamed for triggering a massive cyberattack on Sony's movie studio, will also be sold through Wal-Mart Stores Inc's digital on-demand service, Vudu, and on Sony's PlayStation Network, Sony said in a statement on Wednesday. On Dec. 17, Sony canceled the Christmas Day release of "The Interview," a farcical story starring Seth Rogen and James Franco as...

  • NEW YORK, Dec 31- U.S. stocks fell on Wednesday as crude oil prices continued their descent, but the S&P closed out a third straight year of double-digit gains. The best-performing S&P component in 2014 was Southwest Airlines Co up 124.6 percent, while Transocean Ltd, down 62.9 percent, was the worst. "The fact of the matter is markets put in a solid year in spite of...

  • WASHINGTON, Dec 31- As Republicans assume control of the entire U.S. Congress in the new year, they are expected to push a controversial change to use more macroeconomic projections in determining the impact of tax and budget legislation on the federal deficit. Critics say wider use of "dynamic scoring," as the Republican-favored approach is known, would...

  • NEW YORK, Dec 31- Oil prices fell on Friday to a 5-1/ 2- year low and ended with their second-biggest annual decline ever, down by half since June under pressure from a global glut of crude. Oil prices have collapsed this year as the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries opted to maintain the same level of output despite a global glut caused by expanding...

  • About one year after the Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz first raised the four-decade-old ban as an item for discussion, the Department of Commerce on Dec. 30 took steps toward allowing export of the oil. Congress passed the export ban after the 1970 s Arab oil embargo led to snaking lines at gas stations and fears of a global energy shortage.

  • The Bakken Club, which Halliburton, Statoil, Weatherford and other companies joined for a $15,000 initiation fee and minimum monthly food spend of $750, was evicted from its downtown Williston locale on Dec. 21 for not paying rent, according to court filings. "The business model was working and it will continue to work," added Lundeen, who is also an investor in The...

  • NEW YORK, Dec 31- U.S. stocks fell on Wednesday, but closed out a third straight year of double-digit gains for the S&P 500, as crude oil prices continued their descent.

  • NEW YORK, Dec 31- The U.S. dollar ended 2014 with a gain of nearly 13 percent against a basket of major currencies on Wednesday, its strongest year since 1997 and, according to most major banks, just a prelude to a further rise next year. Traders favored the dollar as this year's winning bet heading into the New Year and pushed the euro to a fresh 29- month low against the...

  • SAFT ON WEALTH-Drink, don't hold, fine wine Wednesday, 31 Dec 2014 | 3:29 PM ET

    Fine wines, held by about a quarter of global high-net worth individuals, have had a bad few years as an investment, with the Liv-ex Fine Wine 100 index down about 35 percent since June of 2011, hurt in part by an anti-corruption campaign in China. A cyclical bad patch isn't the only argument for uncorking that first or- let's be honest- third bottle of fine wine on New...

  • NEW YORK/ LONDON, Dec 31- Gold fell 1.5 percent on pressure from weak oil prices and gains in the U.S. dollar on Wednesday, and was poised to end 2014 down a slight 2 percent after falling below $1,200 an ounce. The impact of a stronger dollar was partially offset by demand from investors worried about tensions in Russia and political uncertainty in Greece.

  • *China stock benchmark adds more than 50 pct. NEW YORK, Dec 31- China and the United States headed the list of 2014 top-performing equity markets among larger economies while markets elsewhere ended the year on a wary note as another sharp drop in oil and worries about Greece's future drove profit-taking. European stocks wrapped up the year 4 percent higher...

  • The film, blamed for triggering a massive cyberattack on Sony's movie studio, will also be sold through Wal-Mart Stores Inc's digital on-demand service, Vudu, and will be available on Sony's PlayStation Network, Sony said in a statement. On Dec. 17, Sony canceled the Christmas Day release of "The Interview" after hackers threatened violence against movie theaters...

  • BUENOS AIRES, Dec 31- Argentina's dollar reserves and the country's notoriouslyspoiled lapdogs will both be flying high as 2015 gets underway, according to President Cristina Fernandez, even if the economy remains a mess. On the president's Facebook page 1/ 8 http://tinyurl.com/mj7mn6t 3/ 8, the white-furred pooch sits prettily in the arms of Fernandez as...

  • NEW YORK, Dec 31- The U.S. bond market could enjoy a solid 2015, but don't expect a repeat of the spectacular run that some fixed-income sectors enjoyed this year, investors said on Wednesday. U.S. government debt that matures in 20 years and beyond is on track for a 27 percent return for 2014, according to Barclays, in a year when the S&P 500 index has gained nearly 15...

  • U.S. drone rules remain in the hangar in 2014 Wednesday, 31 Dec 2014 | 2:17 PM ET

    NEW YORK, Dec 31- The United States missed a year-end deadline for publishing new rules on remote-control aircraft, delaying an eagerly awaited step toward using drones in everything from farming to package delivery. The Federal Aviation Administration turned a draft of the rules- the first major overhaul of the regulations- over to the White House on Oct. 23, and...

  • US STOCKS-Wall St edges lower as oil decline continues Wednesday, 31 Dec 2014 | 2:17 PM ET

    NEW YORK, Dec 31- U.S. stocks were little changed on Wednesday, putting major indexes on track to close out 2014 just off record levels, as crude oil prices continued their descent. Brent shed 1.7 percent to $56.88. Diamond Offshore fell 2.6 percent to $37.08 and Noble Corp was off 2.3 percent at $16.65.

  • NEW YORK, Dec 31- Ambac Assurance Corp sued Bank of America Corp to recoup hundreds of millions of dollars of losses from insuring roughly $1.68 billion of securities backed at least in part by risky mortgages from the bank's Countrywide Home Loans unit. "Countrywide's fraud is borne out by the transactions' dismal performance," said Ambac, which in September 2010...

  • NEW YORK, Dec 31- U.S. Treasuries returned 4.95 percent in 2014 while long bonds astounded with a 27.23 percent return, according to data by Barclays from Tuesday's close. Bonds gained on Wednesday after the Institute for Supply Management-Chicago Business Barometer for December declined to 58.3, its lowest reading since July.

  • The film that is blamed for triggering a massive cyberattack on Sony's movie studio also will be sold through Wal-Mart Stores Inc's digital on-demand service, Vudu, and will be available on Sony's PlayStation Network, Sony said in a statement.