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Wires

  • BEIJING, Dec 18- New home prices in China extended another month of steady growth in November, after picking up slightly in October, shrugging off a range of government measures to rein in an overheated property market as price gains in smaller cities widened. China's housing market has been in a boom lasting more than two years, giving the economy a major boost but...

  • *$80 bln maglev line to link Tokyo, Nagoya, Osaka. TOKYO, Dec 18- Tokyo prosecutors have raided the headquarters of at least two of Japan's biggest construction firms for alleged antitrust violations linked to $80 billion worth of magnetic levitation train line projects. A spokeswoman for the Tokyo District Public Prosecutor's Office said it could not comment...

  • *17/ 18 budget deficit seen at A $23.6 bln, down from A $29.4 bln. SYDNEY, Dec 18- Australia's conservative government on Monday predicted its budget deficit would shrink faster than previously expected and finally return to surplus in 2020/ 21, putting an end to a decade of shortfalls. That was down from A $29.4 billion predicted in the May budget and amounted to 1.3...

  • SINGAPORE, Dec 18- Chicago wheat futures rose to a one-week high on Monday, heading for a third session of gain in four, with prices underpinned by concerns over dry weather hurting the U.S. winter crop. *The U.S. Department of Agriculture said on Friday morning that private exporters reported the sale of 130,000 tonnes of soft red winter wheat to unknown...

  • Republicans said on Sunday they expected Congress to pass a tax code overhaul this week, with a Senate vote as early as Tuesday and President Donald Trump aiming to sign the bill by week's end. John Cornyn, the No. 2 U.S. Senate Republican, said in an interview on ABC's "This Week" that he was "confident" the Senate would pass the legislation, "probably on Tuesday."

  • *China grants $500 m for projects including airport, school. GWADAR, Pakistan Dec 17- China is lavishing vast amounts of aid on a small Pakistani fishing town to win over locals and build a commercial deep-water port that the United States and India suspect may also one day serve the Chinese navy. "The concentration of grants is quite striking," said Andrew Small, an...

  • BEIJING, Dec 18- New home prices in China extended another month of steady growth in November, after picking up slightly in October, shrugging off a range of government moves to rein in an overheated property market. Average new home prices in China's 70 major cities rose 0.3 percent in November from the previous month, in line with October's price gains, Reuters...

  • WASHINGTON, Dec 17- Republican U.S. Senator John McCain is expected to miss an upcoming vote on a tax code overhaul, after his office said he had returned to his home in Arizona following medical treatment. The Senate is expected to vote as early as Tuesday on tax legislation.

  • TOKYO, Dec 18- Tokyo prosecutors have raided the headquarters of at least two of Japan's biggest construction firms for alleged antitrust violations linked to $80 billion worth of magnetic levitation train line projects. Shimizu Corp and Kajima Corp were raided early on Monday morning, spokesmen for the two companies separately said. A spokeswoman for the...

  • MCCAIN HAS RESPONDED WELL TO TREATMENT FOR A VIRAL INFECTION, ALSO RESPONDING POSITIVELY TO ONGOING TREATMENT FOR CANCER- DOCTOR AT NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH.

  • *Vietnam selling up to 54 percent in Sabeco. *Vietnam trade ministry set to conduct auction on Monday. Ho CHI MINH CITY/ SINGAPORE, Dec 17- Thai Beverage, through a local unit, emerged as the only bidder keen to buy all shares on offer of Vietnam's top brewer Sabeco worth nearly $5 billion, as Vietnam conducts an auction on Monday in its biggest privatization process.

  • SENATOR JOHN MCCAIN HAS GONE BACK TO ARIZONA, LOOKS FORWARD TO RETURNING TO WASHINGTON IN JANUARY- MCCAIN'S OFFICE.

  • TORONTO, Dec 17- Canadian homicide detectives have taken the lead in investigating the mysterious deaths of pharmaceuticals billionaire Barry Sherman and his wife, Honey Sherman, after the couple were found dead in their Toronto mansion on Friday, police said on Sunday. Autopsies conducted on Saturday determined that Barry Sherman, 75, and his wife, 70, died...

  • *Exports a key driver of Japan's economic growth. TOKYO, Dec 18- Japan's export growth accelerated in November to mark a full year of annual gains, underscoring the strength of external demand that has led the economy to its second-longest run of postwar growth. In volume terms, Japan's exports rose 5.5 percent in November from a year ago, the 10th consecutive month...

  • West Texas Intermediate crude futures were at $57.33 a barrel at 0105 GMT, up 3 cents from their last settlement. This means U.S. output is fast approaching that of top producers Russia and Saudi Arabia, which are currently pumping around 11 and 10 million bpd respectively. The rising U.S. output also undermines efforts by the Organization of the Petroleum...

  • Republicans said on Sunday they expected Congress to pass a tax code overhaul this week, with a Senate vote as early as Tuesday and President Donald Trump aiming to sign the bill by week's end. President Donald Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, diplomats said, a move likely to face a Washington veto. *The United States provided...

  • SANTIAGO, Dec 17- Conservative Sebastian Pinera won Chile's presidential election by a wider-than-forecast margin on Sunday, pledging to jump-start economic growth in the world's top copper exporter and opt for more business-friendly policies than his center-left predecessor. It was also the biggest ever loss for the center-left coalition that has...

  • TOKYO, Dec 18- The dollar held modest gains against the euro and yen on Monday, having received a lift after U.S. tax reform efforts moved another step closer to ratification over the weekend. Top Republicans are confident the Congress will now pass the tax bill this week, with a Senate vote as early as Tuesday and President Donald Trump aiming to sign the bill by...

  • *MSCI ex- Japan rises 0.1 pct after adding 0.8 pct last week. SYDNEY, Dec 18- Asian shares inched up on Monday, tracking Wall Street, which hit record highs on expectations U.S. lawmakers will pass a long-awaited tax bill, while the British pound hovered near 3- week lows amid Brexit talks. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan gained 0.1 percent,...

  • SEOUL, Dec 18- South Korea's trade ministry said on Monday it had reported to parliament a plan to renegotiate the 2012 free trade agreement with the United States after President Donald Trump threatened earlier this year to scrap the accord unless it was revised. South Korea will seek to protect sensitive industries such as agriculture and livestock while...