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Business Middle East

  • EADS Chief Executive Tom Enders is prepared to talk about guarantees for jobs and production sites in a planned merger of the company with Britain's BAE Systems, he told Germany's Bild daily.

  • DUBAI, Oct 4- HSBC Holdings Plc is to significantly scale back the scope of its global Islamic banking operations, as the business becomes the latest area to be affected by a wider restructuring at the UK- based bank.

  • WASHINGTON/ LONDON, Oct 3- To win approval for their planned $45 billion merger, EADS and BAE systems must persuade Washington to let a pan-European behemoth control some of the most sensitive U.S. defence contracts, without triggering a political backlash.

  • SINGAPORE, Oct 4- India's Oil and Natural Gas Corp has sold 35,000 tonnes of naphtha to Total for Oct. 26-27 loading from Hazira at around $30 a tonne above Middle East quotes on a free-on-board basis, down from previous sales for the month.

  • NEW YORK, Oct 4- Brent and U.S. crude futures rose more than $2 on Thursday as the turmoil in Syria reinforced fears about supply disruptions, and with the dollar weakening and Wall Street higher after European Central Bank's chief remarks encouraged hopes the euro zone debt crisis is being addressed.

  • *Barclays investment bank boss Ricci unveils management shake-up- memo. LONDON, Oct 4- Barclays announced a shake up at its investment bank on Thursday as the group tries to cut costs in a tough market and reduce risks to its reputation following the Libor scandal.

  • The euro zone's economic woes accelerated last month and China's slowdown looked likely to extend to a seventh quarter, surveys on Wednesday showed, while the United States proved the bright spot with better-than-expected news on services and jobs.

  • DUBAI, Oct 4- An Islamic trade association in Iran strongly condemned the protests that flared in Tehran's main bazaar as an enemy conspiracy and said traders had dealt with the "treacherous" acts, Iran's state news agency reported late on Wednesday.

  • *Jittery investors await U.S. job data, watch Europe. *Social unrest in Iran, Turkey- Syria clashes in focus. SINGAPORE, Oct 4- Brent futures steadied above $108 a barrel on Thursday after a sharp drop in the previous session, with investors waiting for a European Central Bank policy meeting and critical jobs data out of the United States this week for more trading cues.

  • SINGAPORE, Oct 3- Danish oil and shipping group A.P. Moller Maersk says it will talk to Vitol to determine whether one of its tankers was used by the trading house to ship Iranian fuel oil. The cargo was transferred aboard the Danish tanker from Vitol's floating storage off Malaysia, the document shows, and shipped to storage in Singapore.

  • MELBOURNE, Oct 4- Australian shares were up 0.2 percent on Thursday as banks rose while miners fell, with sentiment dented by soft retail sales figures for August and declines in oil and copper prices. Top banks continued this week's post rate-cut gains, led by a 1.2 percent rise in Westpac Banking Corp.

  • Oct 3- Morgan Stanley is in talks to sell a majority stake in its commodities business to the Qatar Investment Authority, the Financial Times said, quoting people familiar with the deal. A Morgan Stanley spokeswoman declined to comment on the report.

  • SINGAPORE, Oct 4- U.S. crude held near $88 a barrel in Asia on Thursday after plunging more than 4 percent the day before, with data from the euro zone and China heightening worries about economic growth and oil demand. was up 5 cents at $88.19 a barrel by 0013 GMT.

  • MELBOURNE, Oct 4- Australian shares rose 0.2 percent early on Thursday as gains in banks offset weaker miners, with sentiment supported by encouraging jobs growth data in the United States.

  • KHOBAR, Saudi Arabia, Oct 3- Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia has raised its Arab Light crude price for Asian buyers in November by 90 cents, its state-owned company Saudi Aramco said on Wednesday.

  • *Russia may be irritated with calls for new sanctions-envoys* Israel has threatened military action against Iran By Louis Charbonneau.

  • By Karen Jacobs Oct 3- Hotel operator Marriott International. A demand recovery in North America and rising room rates in the face of limited supply growth is helping Marriott offset softness in Europe. North America accounts for 75 percent of business at Marriott, whose brands include Ritz-Carlton, Residence Inn and Courtyard.

  • *China, Europe services PMI disappoint. NEW YORK, Oct 3- Oil prices fell sharply on Wednesday as disappointing economic data from China and Europe reinforced concerns about slowing growth and a weakening demand for petroleum, even as supportive U.S. data strengthened the dollar.

  • NEW YORK-- Marriott International Inc. said Wednesday that it turned a bigger-than-expected profit in the third quarter on higher prices and strong occupancy rates. The results topped Wall Street's and Marriott's own expectations. Marriott is the first major hotel company to report earnings for the peak summer travel season.

  • Iranian riot police stand next to a garbage container which is set on fire by protesters in central Tehran, near the main bazaar, on October 3, 2012, in the first sign of public unrest over Iran's plunging currency. The rial, lost more than half of its value since last week as the plunge has greatly increased inflation in Iran, which is widely seen as far higher than the official 23.5 percent given by the central bank.

    The protests over the plunging Iranian rial are taking currency wars to a whole new level.