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  • JOHANNESBURG— South Africa's biggest corruption case since the end of apartheid has entangled not only the president and ruling party but also some major international companies, including U.S. firm McKinsey and KPMG. The scandal has weakened the ruling African National Congress, which meets this week to choose a new party leader who likely will be elected...

  • *Dollar dips on shock Democratic win in Alabama. It fell as far as 113.12 yen as Democrat Doug Jones won a bitter fight for a Senate seat in deeply conservative Alabama, in a race marked by sexual misconduct accusations against Republican candidate Roy Moore. The stunning upset makes Jones the first Democratic senator from Alabama in a quarter of a century and...

  • LONDON, Dec 13- Some building companies that installed dangerous cladding on social housing blocks across Britain are now winning new contracts following the Grenfell Tower blaze to remove their original work and install panels that can pass safety tests, a Reuters review shows. The British government, which ordered a series of tests to establish which types...

  • LONDON— Official figures are showing wages in Britain creeping up but still lagging the rise in prices, meaning households continue to experience a real-terms pay cut as they prepare for Christmas. The Office for National Statistics said Wednesday that average weekly earnings in the three months to end-October were 2.5 percent higher than the year before...

  • WASHINGTON— The Latest on the Federal Reserve's monetary policy meeting:. In morning trading in Europe, Germany's DAX index and Britain's FTSE 100 were both down 0.1 percent, while Japan's Nikkei 225 shed 0.5 percent. The dollar was down 0.1 percent against the yen, at 113.38 yen, and flat against the euro at $1.1744.

  • TOKYO, Dec 13- Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said on Wednesday the central bank will guide monetary policy appropriately reflecting improvements in the economy. "We hope Japan's economy remains stable, and that prices and wages rise gradually next year," Kuroda said at a reception with private sector analysts. Kuroda said that despite rapid...

  • ATHENS, Greece— Greece's Supreme Court is due to rule whether to allow the extradition of a Russian cybercrime suspect to the United States to stand trial for allegedly laundering billions of dollars using the virtual currency bitcoin. Alexander Vinnik appeared at the Athens court Wednesday amid an ongoing legal battle between the U.S. and Russia who are both...

  • LONDON, Dec 13- British shares traded sideways on Wednesday as investors' anticipation of a rate rise from the U.S. The FTSE 100, mid-cap and small-cap indices all held steady by 0920 GMT, reflecting the broader European market which tread water ahead of the rate decision. It's a little bit of an inflation trade coming back on with a return to the banks, "said Colin...

  • AMSTERDAM, Dec 12- The Dutch subsidiary of Russia's Alfa Bank, owned by billionaire Mikhail Fridman, was searched last week as part of an investigation into possible money laundering, the Dutch financial crimes prosecutor said on Tuesday. ATB, part of the Alfa Bank Group, mainly provides trade financing to companies doing business in Russia and other parts of the...

  • BERLIN— Germany's antitrust authority says it is launching an examination of how manufacturers of smart TVs handle users' data. Germany has strict data privacy rules. Cartel office chairman Andreas Mundt said the authority deliberately chose "an everyday product that is also used by people with no technological affinity."

  • AMSTERDAM, Dec 12- The Dutch subsidiary of Russia's Alfa Bank, owned by billionaire Mikhail Fridman, was searched last week as part of an investigation into possible money laundering, the Dutch financial crimes prosecutor said on Tuesday. ATB, part of the Alfa Bank Group, mainly provides trade financing to companies doing business in Russia and other parts of the...

  • It was a confluence of factors that contributed to the sinking of the El Faro in the fury of Hurricane Joaquin on Oct. 1, 2015, which killed all 33 people on board, the National Transportation Safety Board announced. The El Faro, which means "lighthouse" in Spanish, sank between Jacksonville, Florida, and San Juan, Puerto Rico, after losing engine power in the Category 3...

  • LONDON, Dec 13- European bourses opened on a cautious note on Wednesday despite gains on Wall Street and in Asia as investors await a U.S. Federal reserve meeting and assess the political implications of Donald Trump's setback in a bitter Senate election in Alabama. "Last night's new U.S. records aren't expected to translate through to this morning's open in...

  • TEL AVIV, Dec 13- The European Investment Fund and Israels Bank Leumi have agreed to renew an initiative to increase lending to innovative small and medium-sized enterprises, they said on Wednesday. The new agreement enables Leumi to provide financing of up to $200 million to technology companies in Israel, with the support of a guarantee provided by the EIF and...

  • TEL AVIV, Dec 13- The European Investment Fund and Israels Bank Leumi have agreed to renew an initiative to increase lending to innovative small and medium-sized enterprises, they said on Wednesday. The new agreement enables Leumi to provide financing of up to $200 million to technology companies in Israel, with the support of a guarantee provided by the EIF and...

  • BRUSSELS— European Union chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said Wednesday there will be "no turning back" for Britain on commitments made during an initial divorce deal between the two, after his U.K. counterpart insisted it was merely a "statement of intent." But Barnier said "progress has been noted and recorded and is going to have to be translated into a...

  • LONDON, Dec 13- Sterling steadied near a two-week low against the dollar on Wednesday, as traders awaited data expected to show British wages picking up speed but still lagging inflation. The figures showed annual inflation at 3.1 percent, well above the Bank of England's 2 percent target. Sterling was trading flat at $1.3320 at 0840 GMT, close to a two-week low of...

  • Lawmakers and aides labored at a fevered pace to blend separate tax bills that were passed recently by the House and Senate. Trump planned to deliver the speech from the Grand Foyer, the entrance of the White House mansion, laying out how the tax changes would specifically benefit the middle-class families in attendance from Pennsylvania, Ohio, Virginia, Iowa...

  • TOKYO, Dec 13- A Japanese court on Wednesday ordered Shikoku Electric Power Co not to restart one of its reactors, overturning a lower court decision and throwing into turmoil Japan's protracted return to nuclear power after the Fukushima disaster. The decision by the High Court in Hiroshima in western Japan has no immediate effect on Shikoku Electric's...

  • LONDON, Dec 13- Germany's 10- year government bond yield clung to recent lows on Wednesday ahead of a U.S. Federal Reserve meeting that is widely expected to end with a decision to raise rates just a day ahead before a meeting of the European Central Bank. Analysts said until this week's major central bank meetings, which includes a Bank of England meeting on...