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Wires

  • WASHINGTON— A major liberal policy group is raising the ante on the health care debate with a new plan that builds on Medicare to guarantee coverage for all. Called "Medicare Extra for All," the proposal to be released Thursday by the Center for American Progress gives politically energized Democrats more options to achieve a long-sought goal.

  • TOKYO, Feb 22- One of the Federal Reserve's newest policymakers on Thursday added his voice to the majority at the U.S. central bank calling for interest rate hikes amid rising business optimism and faster growth in the world's biggest economy. "I anticipate further gradual increases in the policy rate will be appropriate to both sustain a healthy labor market...

  • WASHINGTON— A Republican-led congressional committee is demanding records related to premium-class flights taken by Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt. House Oversight Chairman Trey Gowdy issued a letter to Pruitt this week seeking an accounting of all flights taken by the EPA administrator over the last year and whether the ticket was...

  • Walmart is launching a new online home shopping experience in the coming weeks that will let shoppers discover items based on their style. Later this spring, Walmart is rolling out its new Lord& Taylor dedicated page as part of its partnership with the department store chain's parent company Hudson's Bay. Walmart's home shopping site will include curated...

  • SHANGHAI, Feb 22- China's yuan eased against the U.S. dollar on Thursday, the first trading day after long Lunar New Year holiday, following a much weakened official guidance rate and strength in the greenback. Prior to the market opening, the People's Bank of China lowered its official yuan midpoint to 6.3428 per dollar, the weakest level in nearly a month.

  • *HK-> Shanghai Connect daily quota used 1.6 pct, Shanghai-> HK daily quota used 13.6 pct. SHANGHAI, Feb 22- China stocks rose sharply on Thursday morning as investors back from the week-long Lunar New Year holiday bid up shares across the board in response to resurgent global equities, while Hong Kong pulled back from two-week highs hit on Wednesday.

  • SYDNEY, Feb 22- Australia's Qantas Airways Ltd said half-year profit jumped to a record on cost cuts and hikes in domestic fares- which combined with a share buyback sent its stock bounding higher. The results are the latest in a slew of robust earnings for the aviation sector and Qantas CEO Alan Joyce was upbeat about future earnings prospects, noting that...

  • SINGAPORE, Feb 22- Chicago soybeans edged lower on Thursday, hovering just below a seven-month high reached on the back of dry weather curbing yields in Argentina, the world's third largest exporter. The most-active soybean contract on the Chicago Board Of Trade had eased by 0.2 percent to $10.32-1/ 2 a bushel by 0346 GMT after climbing 0.8 percent in the last...

  • SYDNEY, Feb 22- China's rising power and a resurgent trans-Pacific trade pact will be at the top of the agenda when Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and U.S. Washington will honor the deal to take up to 1,250 asylum-seekers held in Australian detention centers on remote Pacific islands, so Trump and Turnbull will now seek to find common ground on China...

  • QUERETARO, Mexico, Feb 21- French aero engine maker Safran expects to be producing 20,000 composite fan blades for the LEAP jet engine by 2021 at its new plant in central Mexico's Queretaro state, the company's chief executive Philippe Petitcolin said on Wednesday. In Mexico, there are orders for LEAP engines for 60 Aeromexico 737 aircraft and 35 A320neo...

  • SYDNEY, Feb 22- Most Asian share markets followed S&P 500 futures lower on Thursday as speculation of faster hikes in U.S interest rates soured risk appetite globally. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan eased 0.8 percent, while E-Mini futures for the S&P 500 lost 0.5 percent. Japan's Nikkei shed 1.2 percent, with office equipment maker...

  • SYDNEY, Feb 22- U.S. soybean futures edged lower on Thursday, but the oilseed was holding just off a seven-month high as dry weather in Argentina is expected to slash production from the world's No. 3 exporter. *The most active soybean futures on the Chicago Board Of Trade eased 0.3 percent to $10.30-3/ 4 a bushel by 0230 GMT, having firmed 0.8 percent on Wednesday.

  • TOKYO, Feb 22- Japan's Nikkei share average fell to a near 1- week low on Thursday morning on across-the-board selling after U.S. shares dropped overnight, while office equipment maker Ricoh stumbled after a media report said it was considering an impairment charge. Ricoh Co tumbled more than 5 percent shortly after the market opened, following the report which...

  • Treasury's top diplomat ramped up his criticisms of China's economic policies on Wednesday, accusing Beijing of "patently non-market behavior" and saying that the United States needed stronger responses to counter it. David Malpass, Treasury undersecretary for international affairs, said at a forum in Washington that China should no longer be "...

  • Feb 21- The "best hope" for the impact of the Trump administration's $1.5 trillion tax overhaul on the U.S. economy is that it boosts investment and thus productivity, Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank President Neel Kashkari said on Wednesday. But whether it will do so and deliver faster economic growth in the process is unclear, he said at a dinner hosted by...

  • WASHINGTON— A major liberal policy group is raising the ante on the health care debate with a new plan that builds on Medicare to guarantee coverage for all. Called "Medicare Extra for All," the proposal to be released Thursday by the Center for American Progress gives politically energized Democrats more options to achieve a long-sought goal.

  • SINGAPORE, Feb 22- The dollar traded near a one-week high against a basket of major currencies on Thursday, rising after minutes of the Federal Reserve's January meeting showed policymakers were more confident of the need to keep raising interest rates. The dollar index last stood at 90.117, after reaching a high of 90.166, its highest level since Feb. 13.

  • MELBOURNE, Feb 22- London metals fell on Thursday after U.S. policymakers backed the need for more rate rises, pushing up the dollar and putting pressure on metals as trading in Shanghai resumed after a week-long break. *SHFE: Shanghai Futures Exchange copper pared early gains of 1 percent to trade last at 52,800 yuan a tonne, still up half a percent.

  • *Spot gold was largely flat at $1,323.73 an ounce at 0108 GMT, a day after it fell to its lowest in a week at 1,322.20. *U.S. gold futures were down 0.3 percent at $1,328.1 per ounce. *The more upbeat take on inflation in the minutes of the Jan. 30-31 policy meeting released on Wednesday will likely further cement expectations that new Fed chief Jerome Powell will lead his...

  • SHANGHAI, Feb 22- China's central bank lowered its official yuan midpoint to 6.3428 per dollar on Thursday, the weakest level in nearly a month, to catch up with dollar movements in overseas markets. The official yuan midpoint was 102 pips, or 0.16 percent, weaker than the previous fix of 6.3428 on Feb.14. Thursday's official guidance rate was the softest since Jan....