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Wires

  • *Decision comes amid flurry of payments deals in Europe. *Portugal's SIBS, Germany's BS Payone also on the block. FRANKFURT/ LONDON, Sept 20- Swiss stock exchange operator SIX Group has hired JPMorgan to look at options for its payments unit, including a sale worth up to 2 billion Swiss francs, sources familiar with the plans told Reuters.

  • SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico, Sept 21- Hurricane Maria thrashed parts of the Dominican Republic with heavy rain and high winds as it passed off its east coast on Thursday after making a direct hit on Puerto Rico that caused severe flooding and cut power to almost all the island. Maria has killed at least 10 people as it raged through the Caribbean region, the second major...

  • *Spot gold may fall more towards next support at $1,281/ oz- technicals. Spot gold was down 0.2 percent at $1,298.06 an ounce. "The Federal Open Market Committee was surprisingly upbeat and the line on rate hikes in 2017 and 2018 which has caught traders by surprise," said Jeffrey Halley, a senior market analyst at OANDA.

  • FRANKFURT, Sept 21- Lufthansa's bid for Air Berlin assets is focused on securing the 38 crewed planes it currently leases from the insolvent carrier and it is interested in a further 20 to 40 planes, Lufthansa's chief executive said. Those 38 planes currently carry about 1,000 passengers a day, mainly for the group's budget unit Eurowings, and Lufthansa's...

  • MANILA, Sept 21- Graphite electrodes are the main heating element used in an electric arc furnace, a steelmaking process where scrap from old cars or appliances is melted to produce new steel. Electric arc furnaces are cheaper to build than traditional blast furnaces, which make steel from iron ore and are fueled by coking coal. But the cost of steelmaking is...

  • MANILA/ BEIJING, Sept 21- China's aggressive environmental protection campaign has tightened supplies of graphite electrodes used in steelmaking, boosting the fortunes of big producers like Fangda Carbon as mills search far and wide for a material now in short supply. As China tightened the screws on polluting industrial plants, about 30 percent of its...

  • MANILA, Sept 21- Graphite electrodes are the main heating element used in an electric arc furnace, a steelmaking process where scrap from old cars or appliances is melted to produce new steel. Electric arc furnaces are cheaper to build than traditional blast furnaces, which make steel from iron ore and are fuelled by coking coal. But the cost of steelmaking is...

  • *OPEC to discuss potential extension of production cut on Friday. SINGAPORE, Sept 21- Oil markets dipped on Thursday, weighed down by rising crude inventories and production in the United States as well as a stronger dollar, which potentially hampers fuel consumption in countries that use other currencies at home. Brent crude futures, the international...

  • "Our old fans used to play Japanese games, and those people are excited those games are coming back and they recognize them as Japanese-style games," game creator Koji Igarashi told The Associated Press at the show in Makuhari Messe hall in Chiba, a Tokyo suburb. After the dust settled, some of the games that stood the test of time turned out to be Japanese, such as "...

  • TOKYO, Sept 21- Japan's Nikkei share average edged up on Thursday, helped by gains on Wall Street and a weaker yen after the U.S. The dollar was 0.2 percent higher at 112.40 yen after brushing 112.645, its highest since July 18 after the U.S. central bank said it will begin to reduce its balance sheet from next month and indicated that one more rate increase by the end of...

  • BEIJING, Sept 21- Beijing's city authorities have taken down from their website a policy document put up just a few days ago that looked to help improve the city's notorious air quality by banning construction during winter months. It is unclear if the move means the prohibition is no longer in place, with an official at the Beijing Municipal Commission of...

  • HONG KONG— Asian shares were mostly lower while the dollar strengthened Thursday after the Fed said it would start trimming its bond holdings and planned one more interest rate increase this year. KEEPING SCORE: Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 added 0.3 percent to 20,377.35 as the yen weakened against the dollar, benefiting shares of exporters.

  • BERLIN, Sept 21- German insurer Talanx warned it may miss its profit target for 2017 as its reinsurer Hannover Re is being hit by major claims from a series of hurricanes and an earthquake in Mexico. Reinsurers face big losses from Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, which pummelled the Caribbean and the U.S. states of Texas and Florida. They have been closely followed by...

  • TOKYO, Sept 21- Asahi Group Holdings Ltd is ready to spend "billions of dollars" more on acquisitions, after having recently spent $11 billion to acquire beer brands across Europe from Anheuser-Busch InBev NV, a top company executive said. Akiyoshi Koji, president of the largest beer maker in Japan, did not give any further details on how much Asahi was looking to...

  • They are displayed in the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Despite their ubiquity, they started in 1998 with one man: A 25- year-old employee of mobile phone carrier NTT DoCoMo who created the first set of 176 in one month as he rushed to meet a deadline. If I hadn't done it, someone else would have, "said Shigetaka Kurita, who now is a board member at Dwango Co., a Tokyo...

  • *OPEC to discuss potential extension of production cut on Friday. SINGAPORE, Sept 21- Oil markets dipped on Thursday, weighed down by rising crude inventories and production in the United States as well as a stronger dollar, which potentially hampers fuel consumption in countries that use other currencies at home. Brent crude futures, the international...

  • *Gov Kuroda to brief media 0630 GMT. TOKYO, Sept 21- The Bank of Japan kept monetary settings steady on Thursday, but a board newcomer argued against the central bank's view that current policy was sufficient to boost inflation to its 2 percent target in a sobering assessment of the outlook. The BOJ also maintained a loose pledge to keep buying bonds so its holdings...

  • The committee, along with other congressional committees and special counsel Robert Mueller, is investigating possible links between President Donald Trump's campaign and Russia. Facebook said earlier this month that a Russia- based operation spent $100,000 on thousands of ads on its social media platform promoting' divisive' messages before and after...

  • SHANGHAI, Sept 21- China and Hong Kong shares rose on Thursday, bucking regional weakness, as revived expectations of another U.S. rate increase later this year boosted financial stocks, offseting profit takig in high-flying commodity plays. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index edged up 0.1 percent to 28,155.00, while the Hong Kong China Enterprises Index gained 0.6...

  • SAN FRANCISCO— Google is biting off a big piece of device manufacturer HTC for $1.1 billion to expand its efforts to build phones, speakers and other gadgets equipped with its arsenal of digital services. The deal underscores how serious Google is becoming about designing its own family of devices to compete against Apple and Amazon in a high-stakes battle to...