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  • LONDON, Feb 19- Australia said on Monday it would be open to the idea of Britain joining the Trans-Pacific Partnership regional trade group after it leaves the European Union. But Bishop, visiting Britain as Prime Minister Theresa May tries to unite her cabinet on what they want from Brexit, also said Australia would only be able to strike a bilateral trade deal...

  • PALM BEACH, Fla., Feb 19- President Donald Trump spoke to Senator John Cornyn about gun legislation on Friday, two days after a shooting at a Florida school killed 17 people, and supports efforts to improve the federal background check system, the White House said on Monday. Trump spoke to Cornyn, a Republican, about the bi-partisan bill he and Democratic Senator...

  • TRAVERSE CITY, Mich.— Consumers Energy will phase out electricity production from coal by 2040 to slash emissions of heat-trapping gases that cause global warming, the Michigan utility's president and CEO told The Associated Press. Consumers Energy and DTE Energy Co., which supply most of Michigan's electricity, are among many U.S. providers moving away from...

  • *Some focus turns to Israel- Iran tensions. LONDON, Feb 19- Oil prices hit their highest level in nearly two weeks on Monday, lifted by a global equity market recovery and tensions in the Middle East, although concerns of rising U.S. production tempered gains. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday that Israel could act against Iran itself, not just...

  • TRUMP SPOKE TO REPUBLICAN SENATOR CORNYN FRIDAY ABOUT GUN LEGISLATION, IS SUPPORTIVE OF EFFORTS TO IMPROVE THE FEDERAL BACKGROUND CHECK SYSTEM-WHITE HOUSE.

  • LONDON, Feb 19- Copper fell on Monday as a recovery in the dollar prompted some profit-taking in the metal after its biggest weekly rise in more than a year, while aluminum climbed as the United States said it was considering import tariffs on the metal. "Financial markets have had quite a volatile month, and that has also been the case for copper," Danske Bank analyst...

  • LONDON, Feb 19- Copper fell on Monday as a recovery in the dollar prompted some profit-taking in the metal after its biggest weekly rise in more than a year, while aluminium climbed as the United States said it was considering import tariffs on the metal. "Financial markets have had quite a volatile month, and that has also been the case for copper," Danske Bank analyst...

  • *Russia is one of the world's top grain exporters. *Pre-tax margins rise to $5- 6 after tax changes, from negative. MOSCOW/ HAMBURG, Feb 19- A Russian crackdown on tax avoidance in the agriculture sector has been a boon for its grain traders, allowing them to buy directly from farmers and cut out a complex web of middlemen.

  • LONDON, Feb 19- Lloyds investors are expecting a share buy-back and a three-year plan centered on digital investment and growing its insurance and wealth businesses when the British bank reports on Wednesday. Britain's biggest mortgage lender will announce the strategy with its first full-year results since the government sold the remainder of its stake...

  • LONDON, Feb 19- The dollar enjoyed a small rebound on Monday as investors bought back the greenback after its plunge to three-year lows, although analysts said any recovery looked set to be brief with dollar bears still out in force. Confidence in the dollar has also been shaken by concerns the United States could pursue a weaker dollar policy and by mounting...

  • JERUSALEM— Israeli energy company Delek Drilling has announced a $15 billion deal to supply natural gas to Egypt. Delek and its U.S. partner, Noble Energy, signed a deal Monday to sell a total of 64 billion cubic meters of gas over a 10- year period to Egyptian company Dolphinus Holdings. Yossi Abu, chief executive of Delek Drilling, said in an interview that the deal...

  • RIGA, Feb 19- One of Latvia biggest banks was forced to seek emergency help on Monday after it was destabilized by money laundering allegations, hours after the separate detention of the central bank governor on suspicion of soliciting bribes. The financial sector in Latvia, a small euro zone state that shares a border with Russia, has come under wider scrutiny...

  • LONDON, Feb 19- Petroleum markets were hit by a heavy bout of profit-taking in the second week of February as hedge funds liquidated some of the record long positions they accumulated over the previous seven months. Hedge funds and other money managers cut their combined net long position in the six most important petroleum futures and options contracts by the...

  • LONDON, Feb 19- Global banking regulators signaled on Monday they were in no rush to adapt their rules to financial technology firms that have begun nibbling away at banks' markets. The regulators looked at how fintechs could disrupt banks' business models by offering payments services, crowdfunding, mobile banks and online trading. "Despite the hype, the large...

  • MOSCOW, Feb 19- Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska plans to step down as the president of the two companies he controls- aluminum giant Rusal and En+ Group, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters. En+ has invited international banks to pitch for the sale of $1 billion of shares in the company, three sources told Reuters last week. Deripaska's En+ owns assets...

  • SINGAPORE, Feb 19- Singapore's move on Monday to raise stamp duty on expensive home purchases is likely to dampen the recent wave of redevelopment sales in the city-state's recovering property market, analysts said. Singapore's central bank warned in November about "excessive exuberance" in the city-state's property market, urging developers to take into...

  • MUMBAI/ NEW DELHI, Feb 19- India's government has said the $1.77 billion fraud at state-run Punjab National Bank was a "manifestation of supervisory failure" at the country's central bank, local media reported on Monday. In a letter to the Reserve Bank of India, the government said the failure to detect the fraud, the biggest ever in India's banking sector, raised...

  • Feb 16- Global inflation is finally on the rise, the bond market has apparently declared, but the data do not yet point firmly to that conclusion, suggesting the low trend in place since the financial crisis may linger for a while. What the U.S. bond market appears to be reacting to as well is a different kind of worry: trillions of dollars worth of extra debt supply to...

  • Feb 16- Global inflation is finally on the rise, the bond market has apparently declared, but the data do not yet point firmly to that conclusion, suggesting the low trend in place since the financial crisis may linger for a while. What the U.S. bond market appears to be reacting to as well is a different kind of worry: trillions of dollars worth of extra debt supply to...

  • *Italy the laggard, traders cite election jitters. Greece was the exception following news on Friday that Fitch had upgraded Greece's long-term rating to' B' from' B-' and kept its outlook positive despite its debts. Sentiment has been boosted by expectations that Greece will exit its latest bailout in August and get debt relief from its international creditors.