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Europe Top News and Analysis Switzerland

  • GENEVA-- Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis AG posted flat third quarter profits as new drugs offset patent expirations.

  • GENEVA-- Credit Suisse Group said Thursday it would boost its cost-cutting program as it posted a 63 percent fall in third-quarter profit following an accounting charge on its debt. Shares in Credit Suisse rose 2.3 percent to 21.82 francs in early trading on the Zurich exchange.

  • 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..

  • 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.

  • *Swiss to vote on curbing executive pay on March 3. ZURICH, Oct 24- Swiss business is rallying to arms to defend top managers' pay as the government set a date on Wednesday for a referendum that may impose the world's first law forcing companies to accept any limits shareholders place on executive rewards.

  • GENEVA, Oct 24- Global trade in commercial services such as tourism and air travel showed zero growth in the second quarter of 2012 as the Europe Union's appetite shrank 7 percent, preliminary trade figures showed on Wednesday. The Europe- led slowdown follows a Europe- led boom a year ago.

  • LONDON, Oct 24- A simple approach to reining in risks at banks would fail to capture the complexity of modern day lenders, a top global regulator said.

  • *Nigeria loses out on $29 bln on cut-price gas deals-report. ABUJA, Oct 24- Nigeria lost out on tens of billions of dollars in oil and gas revenues over the last decade from cut price deals struck between multinational oil companies and government officials, a confidential report seen by Reuters says.

  • MORRIS TOWNSHIP, N.J.-- Technology and manufacturing company Honeywell International Inc. said Wednesday it agreed to buy Saia Burgess Controls for $130 million. Saia Burgess controls is based in Switzerland and it is owned by Johnson Electric Group of Hong Kong. Shares of Honeywell fell 7 cents to $61.48 in morning trading.

  • *Macitentan the big hope as Tracleer nears patent expiry. ZURICH, Oct 24- A new lung and heart drug from Actelion prolonged overall survival by more than a third in a clinical trial, reassuring Europe's leading biotech company that it has a viable successor to its current top seller.

  • NEW ORLEANS-- Oil giant BP has asked a federal judge to disregard objections from a fraction of claimants and give final approval to a proposed multibillion-dollar settlement over economic damages from the Gulf oil spill.

  • As Asia Slows, Luxury Watchmakers Count on Elite Buyers

    As Asia Slows, Luxury Watchmakers Count on Elite Buyers

  • SEOUL, South Korea-- South Korea says it has been chosen to host a new U.N. climate fund that aims to channel $100 billion a year in aid to developing nations. Seoul's Finance Ministry says the decision was made Saturday in a vote by the fund's 24- member board in Songdo, South Korea.

  • Bank of America was the best performer, improving its key capital ratio under Basel III rules by more than 1 percent, to 8.97 percent, Fitch said. To do so, Bank of America reduced riskier securities held in its portfolio. JPMorgan Chase improved the same ratio by a half-percentage point, reducing its riskier assets by $21 billion.

  • ROME-- At least 15 more cyclists have been linked to Lance Armstrong's banned Italian sport doctor in an intricate scheme of money laundering, tax evasion and widespread doping.

  • By early afternoon in Europe, benchmark crude for November delivery was up 36 cents to $92.46 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, which many U.S. refiners use to make gasoline, was up 40 cents to $112.82 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London.

  • GENEVA-- An appeals panel of the World Trade Organization has upheld a ruling that China unfairly imposed import tariffs on a high-technology U.S. steel product. In a ruling Thursday, the WTO appeals panel said China was wrong in the way it put duties on U.S.-made grain-oriented flat-rolled electrical steel.

  • Property and casualty insurer ACE Ltd. said Thursday that it reached a deal to buy Ally Financial Inc.' s Mexican insurance business for about $865 million in cash. The company has more than 30 sales offices throughout Mexico and distributes its products through nearly 2,000 independent agents, along with auto dealerships, banks and direct channels.

  • GENEVA-- Nestle SA, the world's biggest food and drink company, on Thursday said its sales growth slowed to 11 percent in the first nine months of 2012 as demand eased both in developed economies and emerging markets, where high growth is starting to cool off.

  • GENEVA-- Strong growth in emerging markets helped Swiss food and drink giant Nestle SA post an 11 percent increase in sales for the first nine months of 2012.. The Vevey- based group said Thursday that sales rose to 67.6 billion Swiss francs through September, up from 60.9 billion francs in the same period last year.