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  • *FTSE 100 up 0.1 pct, mid-caps down 0.1 pct. LONDON, Jan 19- Britain's major share index stalled on Friday, as profit warnings from Dignity and Carpetright hurt retailers and a drop in retail sales last month provided further evidence of a broad slowdown in consumer spending. The FTSE 100 inched up 0.1 percent in early deals, caught in a tug-of-war between strong...

  • LONDON— Official figures show that retail sales in Britain sank in the holiday shopping month of December as higher prices squeeze consumers' spending power. The Office for National Statistics said Friday that retail sales fell by 1.5 percent in December from the month before, double what most economists were predicting. Household incomes have been...

  • Jan 19- A third of Chinese conglomerate HNA Group's listed units have suspended trading in their shares since November as the group faces rising financing costs after a $50 billion acquisition spree over the past two years. 1. HNA-Caissa Travel Group Co Ltd. *Major shareholders: HNA Tourism Group Co Ltd owns 32.18 percent.

  • BERLIN— A new poll suggests the Swiss are willing to continue paying fees for public broadcasting ahead of a referendum being closely watched across Europe. Backers of the proposal, to be voted on March 4, say charging households 451.10 Swiss francs a year to use radio and television is excessive. Opponents warn it could imperial an important public service in...

  • MADRID— Catalonia's fugitive former leader, who wants his old job back, says new technologies would allow him to govern from Belgium. Carles Puigdemont spoke to Catalan public radio from Brussels, where he fled to avoid a judicial probe in Spain over secession attempts. But with ousted Catalan Cabinet members under investigation, jailed or in Brussels and...

  • *Spain/ Germany yield spread at tightest in 5 1/ 2 months. That would restore the "A" rating for the first time since early 2012, the height of the euro zone debt crisis, when Spain was downgraded by all three of the main ratings agencies. "We now consider that there exists a slightly higher probability that Fitch will upgrade Spain by one notch than that it will reaffirm...

  • *China's SCIO applauds cities' efforts as "timely and effective". CHENGDU/ BEIJING, Jan 19- China's provincial capitals have discovered a way to keep apartment sales booming by making it much easier for graduates to get coveted household registration permits. The permits, known as hukou, have been used to control internal migration in China for many years.

  • BEIJING, Jan 19- As influential voices within the U.S. business community warn China that U.S. Hanging over trade relations are several inquiries into whether steel and aluminium imports- including those from China- are harming U.S. national security, possible tariffs on imported solar panels, as well as an investigation into potential Chinese abuse of...

  • *10- year UST yields hit highest since Sep 2014. LONDON, Jan 19- The dollar wallowed near three-year lows on Friday as heightened fears of a U.S. government shutdown unnerved investors, while U.S. Legislation to stave off an imminent federal government shutdown encountered obstacles in the Senate late on Thursday, despite the passage of a month-long funding bill...

  • *Oerlikon jumps on China orders. MILAN, Jan 19- European shares edged up on Friday as gains among miners following strong economic data from top metals consumer China helped offset a pullback in energy firms as crude prices fell. "These contracts point to a stronger and more sustainable recovery of the investment cycle in the manmade/polyester industry...

  • JOHANNESBURG— First, there was outrage in Africa at President Donald Trump's vulgar comment about the continent. Now some governments and tourism operators are humorously exploiting it to promote Africa's many attractions. "You can fight the negative with the negative, or you can give some pushback with the tongue-in-cheek approach," Gys Joubert, Gondwana...

  • LONDON, Jan 19- Global oil markets are tightening quickly on falling supply from Venezuela, which posted 2017' s biggest unplanned output fall and could see a further decline in 2018, the International Energy Agency said on Friday. Debt and infrastructure problems cut Venezuela's December output to 1.61 million barrels per day, somewhere near a 30- year low.

  • LONDON, Jan 19- Global oil markets are tightening quickly on falling supplies from Venezuela, which posted 2017' s biggest unplanned output fall and could see a further decline in 2018, the International Energy Agency said on Friday. Debt and infrastructure problems cut Venezuela's output in December to 1.61 million barrels per day, somewhere near a 30- year...

  • TOKYO, Jan 19- The Japanese government raised its assessment of the economy in January for the first time in seven months due to rising consumer spending, an encouraging sign that inflation could start to pick up this year. "Japan's economy is gradually recovering," the Cabinet Office said in its monthly economic report on Friday. The assessment increases the...

  • HONG KONG, Jan 19- Top executives of Huawei Technologies Co, including founder Ren Zhengfei, will pay a self-imposed fine totaling 3 million yuan for management oversight of some quality breaches at the firm, an internal company memo shows. Ren, who did not provide any details about the breach, was fined 1 million yuan, while Huawei's three rotating CEOs- Guo Ping,...

  • *China Enterprises index HSCE rises 0.7 percent. Jan 19- Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index ended at a new high, up for the sixth week in a row, led by property shares, as mainland money gushed into the city. **The Hang Seng China Enterprises index rose 0.65 percent to 13,179.52.

  • TOKYO, Jan 19- SoftBank Group Corp's expected spin-off of its Japanese telecoms business will lure investors seeking exposure to a solid tech name, but the prospect of tougher competition in a mature industry may turn off those chasing higher returns. The company aims to sell about 30 percent of SoftBank Corp, Japan's No. 3 wireless carrier, for about 2 trillion...

  • SINGAPORE, Jan 19- Oil prices dropped more than 1 percent on Friday as a bounce-back in U.S. production outweighed ongoing declines in crude inventories. Brent crude futures were at $68.65 a barrel at 0802 GMT, down 66 cents, or 0.95 percent, from their last close. West Texas Intermediate crude futures were at $63.23 a barrel, down 72 cents, or 1.1 percent, from their...

  • The plan puts the FDA at the center of a long-standing debate over so-called "reduced-risk" products, such as e-cigarettes, and whether they should have a role in anti-smoking efforts, which have long focused exclusively on getting smokers to quit. The FDA plan is two-fold: drastically cut nicotine levels in cigarettes so that they are essentially...

  • FRANKFURT, Jan 19- Finland's Nokia said on Friday it signed its first major deal to supply new 5 G wireless radio base stations to Japanese telecom operator NTT DoCoMo, which boasts nearly half of the country's mobile subscribers. The contract marks Nokia's first sizeable deal for its flagship mobile base station equipment based on official global New Radio...