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  • NEW YORK, July 28- Investors in social media shares have zeroed-in on Facebook Inc, piling into stock options to add bullish bets on the company in the days ahead of its Wednesday earnings. The ascent has made Facebook one of the ten largest S&P companies in terms of market capitalization, with the stock now worth more than $260 billion- surpassing decades-old...

  • Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat and skeptic of broad government surveillance, objected Tuesday to a bill that would have required social media and online sites like Google, Yahoo, Twitter and Facebook to alert federal authorities of any terrorist activity. Dianne Feinstein, D- Calif., had been tucked into a broader bill authorizing intelligence programs...

  • UNITED NATIONS, July 28- Venezuela's president Nicolas Maduro said he asked U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki- moon for U.N. mediation in his country's century-old border dispute with neighboring Guyana. Guyana is a small former British colony of around 740,000 people on the northeast shoulder of South America.

  • SAO PAULO— Standard& Poor's Ratings Services says it is revising the outlook for Brazil's foreign-currency debt from stable to negative. The ratings agency says in a statement emailed on Tuesday that it has kept Brazil's BBB- long-term foreign-currency sovereign credit rating and the country's BBB+ long-term local-currency sovereign credit rating.

  • NEW YORK— A U.S. judge has indicated he is unlikely to boost a $654 million lawsuit award to victims of terror attacks in Israel over a decade ago to more than $1 billion. Federal Judge George Daniels said at a hearing in New York City on Tuesday he was not convinced the Palestine Liberation Organization and the Palestinian Authority should have to pay interest.

  • *Lower coffee, sugar futures linked to weak Brazil currency. NEW YORK/ LONDON, July 28- Arabica coffee futures on ICE flirted with a 1-1/ 2- year low in choppy dealings on Tuesday, buoyed earlier by short-covering but pressured by the tumbling currency in top grower Brazil, while robustas tapped a two-month low. Arabica prices bounced as the market lacked enough...

  • WASHINGTON— Mead Johnson has agreed to pay $12 million to settle federal civil charges that its Chinese subsidiary bribed hospital professionals to recommend its infant formula to new or expecting mothers who were patients. The Securities and Exchange Commission announced the settlement Tuesday with Mead Johnson Nutrition Co., a company with operations...

  • July 28- Coal and natural gas producer Consol Energy Inc lowered its 2015 budget for oil and gas operations by 13 percent to $800 million, the second cut this year, and slashed dividend as it struggles to cope with dismally low commodity prices. The Pennsylvania well, in the Utica shale field in Westmoreland County, had a 24- hour flow rate of more than 61 million...

  • July 28- Freeport-McMoRan Inc may cut output at its small North American copper and molybdenum mines to help it reduce costs, analysts said on Tuesday after the miner and oil producer announced a cost and spending review amid weak commodity prices. Shares in Arizona- based Freeport leapt on the announcement, and were last up 9.4 percent at $12.44 on the New York...

  • CALGARY, Alberta, July 28- The left-leaning government of Alberta is open to including industry incentives in its review of royalties paid by oil and gas companies in Canada's largest oil-producing province, Energy Minister Marg McCuaig-Boyd said on Tuesday. The review by the New Democratic Party government, which was elected in May, combined with a recently...

  • SAO PAULO, July 28- General Motors Co plans to double its investment in Brazil to 13 billion reais through 2019 and introduce a new family of vehicles into the country, the U.S. carmaker's executives said on Tuesday. Speaking at a press conference in Sao Paulo, Jaime Ardila, the head of GM in South America, said the company's investment in Brazil would be aimed at...

  • TOLEDO, Ohio— The owner of a northwest Ohio funeral home where several bodies intended for cremation were found in a state of decay has pleaded not guilty to corpse abuse charges. Robert Tate Jr. of Tate Funeral Services in Toledo was arraigned Tuesday on two felony counts in Lucas County court. A message seeking comment was left for Tate's attorney, Derek Farmer.

  • July 28- Paymap Inc, a unit of Western Union Co, agreed to pay $38.4 million to settle U.S. regulatory charges that it deceived consumers into signing up for a program advertised as a way to help them pay off their mortgages faster and save on interest payments. The U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on Tuesday said Paymap, a payment processor, will pay a $5...

  • Wall Street's Dow Jones industrial average was up 128.01 points, or 0.73 percent, to 17,568.6 in midday New York trade, the S&P 500 gained 18.45 points, or 0.89 percent, to 2,086.09 and the Nasdaq Composite added 32.60 points, or 0.65 percent, to 5,072.38. RSA Insurance Group jumped 18 percent after Zurich Insurance said it was considering a bid for the British group.

  • *Zurich spokesman says RSA would complement business. *RSA says has received no proposal from Zurich. *Zurich shares down 1.8 pct, RSA up 18 pct.

  • BRASILIA, July 28- The arrest of Luiz Pinheiro da Silva, currently on leave as chief executive officer of Brazil's Eletronuclear, is unwelcome but should not cause problems in other areas under power regulator Aneel's jurisdiction, Aneel's general director, Romeu Donizete Rufino, said on Tuesday.

  • French state-controlled Nexter Systems and privately-held Krauss-Maffei Wegmann GmbH& Co KG of Germany have been in exclusive tie-up talks for more than a year. One apparent sticking point had been the reported preference of German Vice-Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel for an all-German merger of KMW with automotive and defense group Rheinmetall designed to...

  • LONDON, July 28- While local Chinese fret over the bursting of the Shanghai stock bubble, global investors are more worried about the yuan currency which once seemed destined to rise inexorably. A decade after China released the yuan from its peg to the dollar, ever more international money managers no longer regard the currency as a one-way appreciation bet...

  • The ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit orders the EPA to redo sulfur-dioxide and nitrogen-oxide standards for 13 states, mostly in the South and Midwest, that contribute to soot and smog along the East Coast. The April 2014 ruling was an important victory for the Obama administration and capped a decades-long effort by the...

  • *Strike halts Chile's key Chuquicamata mine. LONDON, July 28- Copper prices rose on Tuesday, but the market remained nervous over the latest convulsions in Chinese equities and the possible ramifications for demand from the world's top metals consumer. Benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange rose 2.2 percent to close at $5,300 a tonne from $5,188 at the...