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  • Oct 4- U.S. Labor Department report of initial state jobless benefit claims, seasonally adjusted. Initial Claims: Sept. 22 from 359,000. Mississippi 3,314 Ohio 1,975 Michigan 1,179.

  • WASHINGTON, Oct 4- The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose less than expected last week, according government data on Thursday that suggested a mild improvement in the labor market. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits climbed 4,000 to a seasonally adjusted 367,000, the Labor Department said.

  • NEW YORK, Oct 4- Lenders seized fewer U.S. homes in August, in part due to the rising popularity of alternatives to foreclosure, data analysis firm CoreLogic said on Thursday. There were 57,000 foreclosures completed in August, down from 58,000 in July and 75,000 a year ago, according to CoreLogic.

  • Oct 4- Canada's main stock index looked set to open higher on Thursday after the European Central Bank left interest rates unchanged at its policy meeting and as upbeat U.S. economic data in the previous session helped alleviate fears of global slowdown.

  • September sales rose 3.9 percent _ a slowdown from the 6- percent rise in August _ as 22 retailers like Macy's and Costco reported mixed results, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers. "This should set up to be a good holiday season," said Ken Perkins, president of Retail Metrics LLC, a research firm.

  • NEW YORK, Oct 4- Gap Inc:.

  • Dow futures are up 46 points to 13,472. The broader S&P 500 futures are up 6 points to 1,451. Nasdaq futures are up 13 points to 2,821.. Investors are also awaiting news from the monthly policy meeting of the European Central Bank.

  • Oct 4- Social media company Facebook Inc said on Thursday it reached the 1 billion active monthly users threshold last month, and is up more than 50 million users since June. Facebook, based in Menlo Park, California, hit the 1 billion milestone on Sept. 14 at 12:45 p.m. Pacific time, the company said on its website.

  • By Saeed Azhar and Kelvin Soh SINGAPORE/ HONG KONG, Oct 4- Standard Chartered's.

  • Target says a key revenue figure rose 2.1 percent in September as shoppers picked up back-to-school items and groceries. Total sales for the five weeks ended Sept. 29 rose 2.6 percent to $6.08 billion. Minneapolis- based Target expects October revenue in stores open at least one year to rise in the mid- to low-single digit percentage range.

  • KHARTOUM, Oct 4- Sudan and South Sudan will remain locked in conflict despite reaching a border security deal last week because they do not trust each other enough to resolve their biggest disputes, leading Sudanese opposition figure Hassan al-Turabi said.

  • NEW YORK, Oct 4- CollabRx Inc:.

  • "Resident Evil" is a zombie. Once one of the most respected and beloved video-game franchises, it's now a shell of its former self.

  • *Announces FDA 510 clearance and ce mark for Nellcor (TM) bedside. *Says new system will be available in the United States and throughout the eea. in the next few months.

  • Now, at 25 a veteran anti-abortion campaigner in the semi-autonomous UK province of Northern Ireland, she's committed to a fight to ensure the abortion law in neighbouring Ireland remains one of the world's strictest, preventing terminations in nearly all circumstances.

  • NEW YORK-- Thousands of teenagers who can't take their cellphones to school have another option, courtesy of a burgeoning industry of sorts in always-enterprising New York City: paying a dollar a day to leave it in a truck that's parked nearby.

  • NEW YORK, Oct 4- Informatica Corp:.

  • *Morgan Stanley in commodities talks with Qatar for a year. DUBAI/ LONDON, Oct 4- Morgan Stanley's talks with Qatar's sovereign wealth fund over the sale of its commodities business have run into difficulty, and the deal may need to be reworked if it is to go ahead, banking sources said.

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    Many contractors are seeing business improve as home sales slowly recover and homeowners are feeling better about the economy. Does this uptick have serious momentum?

  • NEW YORK-- Facebook has topped 1 billion users, but the past few months have not been easy. Zuckerberg updated his Facebook status on Thursday to announce that the social networking site has more than 1 billion active users each month. He thanked users and said that he is committed to making Facebook better.