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  • LONDON, Oct 25- International oil company BP, weakened and distracted by its troubles in the United States and Russia, is in danger of losing touch with the leaders in an industry where strength and focus yield the richest pickings. ``I can't help thinking they've sort of lost their way.'' Everywhere you look, they're falling behind, `` said a senior executive of one rival this week.

  • *Iran to seek more coking coal as steel imports banned. Despite the setbacks, industry sources say producers in Ukraine are providing Iran with coking coal, also known as metallurgical coal, and coke- key steel ingredients.

  • *Storm causes deaths in Cuba, Haiti and Jamaica. NASSAU, Oct 26- Hurricane Sandy pounded the Bahamas with battering winds and rain on Friday, sweeping over the island chain after killing 21 people across the Caribbean and posing a menacing threat to the U.S. East Coast.

  • Silvio Berlusconi faces verdict in tax fraud case Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 6:18 AM ET

    MILAN-- An Italian court is set to deliver verdicts Friday against former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and 10 others in a six-year-old tax fraud trial. Prosecutors have demanded a sentence of 3 years and eight months for Berlusconi and three years and four months for the chairman of his Mediaset conglomerate, Fedele Confalonieri.

  • SINGAPORE, Oct 26- Brent futures fell more than $1 to slip below $108 a barrel on Friday as investors waited for key U.S. economic data to gauge the demand growth outlook for oil with rising supplies weighing on prices. Brent crude had slipped $1.02 a barrel to $107.47 by 0527 GMT. U.S. oil slipped 90 cents to $85.15, after ending up 32 cents.

  • *Storm causes deaths in Cuba, Haiti and Jamaica. NASSAU, Oct 26- Hurricane Sandy pounded the Bahamas with battering winds and rain on Friday, sweeping over the island chain after killing 21 people across the Caribbean and posing a menacing threat to the U.S. East Coast.

  • TOKYO, Oct 26- Japan's Nikkei share average fell from a four-week high on Friday on concerns Chinese funds may face heavy redemptions after local media reports of poor quarterly earnings, and after a disappointing result at index heavyweight Fanuc Ltd. The Nikkei lost 1.4 percent to 8,933.06, while the broader Topix dropped 1.4 percent to 741.23.

  • European stock index futures signal lower start Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 6:02 AM ET

    LONDON, Oct 26- European stock index futures pointed to a lower open on Friday as lacklustre numbers from global giants Apple and Amazon set a gloomy backdrop for the release of U.S. GDP data later in the day. At 0601 GMT, futures for the Euro STOXX 50 and France's CAC were down 0.9 percent, while contracts on Germany's DAX shed 0.5 percent.

  • INSIGHT-At Nestle, interacting with the online enemy Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 6:00 AM ET

    VEVEY, Switzerland, Oct 26- It looks like mission control: in a Swiss market town, an array of screens in Nestle's headquarters tracks online sentiment. Other companies, such as PepsiCo, Danone and Unilever, have exploited the opportunities to promote themselves online.

  • *MSCI Asia ex- Japan tumbles, Nikkei eases in choppy trade. Financial spreadbetters expect London's FTSE 100, Paris's CAC-40 and Frankfurt's DAX to open down as much as 1.2 percent. The MSCI index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan tumbled 1.2 percent, and was set for a weekly drop of about 1.5 percent, which would be its largest weekly decline in two months.

  • 1 in 4 Spaniards out of work at end of 3rd quarter Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 5:52 AM ET

    The National Statistics Institute said Friday that 85,000 more people joined the ranks of the unemployed between July and September, raising the total to 5.78 million. Spain is under pressure to ask for outside aid to help deal with its debts.

  • *Italian yields drop Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 5:51 AM ET
  • *Russian, Romanians probed for classified documents Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 5:49 AM ET
  • MOSCOW, Oct 25- The Kremlin on Thursday dismissed talk that Russian President Vladimir Putin has a back problem that prompted him to postpone foreign visits and might require surgery. Putin, who began a six-year presidential term in May and turned 60 on Oct. 7, was seen to be limping at an Asia-Pacific summit in the Pacific port of Vladivostok in early September.

  • REFILE-Kremlin dismisses talk Putin has back trouble Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 5:35 AM ET

    MOSCOW, Oct 25- The Kremlin on Thursday dismissed talk that Russian President Vladimir Putin has a back problem that prompted him to postpone foreign visits and might require surgery. Putin, who began a six-year presidential term in May and turned 60 on Oct. 7, was seen to be limping at an Asia-Pacific summit in the Pacific port of Vladivostok in early September.

  • *Statoil Q3 profit hits $2.5 billion Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 5:27 AM ET
  • ExxonMobil executive killed in Belgium Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 5:16 AM ET

    BRUSSELS-- An executive for ExxonMobil, the world's largest oil company, has been killed in front of his wife on a street in a suburb of the Belgian capital of Brussels. Nicholas Mockford, a British national, was shot as he left an Italian restaurant in Neder-over-Heembeek on Oct. 14.

  • *China Unicom slumps 7 pct after Q3 earnings disappoint. *Bank of China climbs after positive earnings. HONG KONG, Oct 26- China shares tumbled to a three week low on Friday, dragging down Hong Kong markets, as investors took profits on recent outperformers ahead of several key third quarter corporate earnings from major resources companies.

  • Oil retreats to near $85 per barrel Friday, 26 Oct 2012 | 5:07 AM ET

    Benchmark oil for December delivery was down 78 cents to $85.26 a barrel at late afternoon Bangkok time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose 32 cents to finish at $86.05 a barrel in New York on Thursday, the only day this week that oil prices have risen. Brent crude fell 79 cents to $107.70 a barrel in London.

  • The Italian carmaker is preparing to present third-quarter results and has pledged to give a strategy update on Oct. 30, just days after a perfect storm of plant closures, plunging profit and a state bailout rocked Europe's automotive industry.