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Business - Europe edges up on earnings, risk aversion remains

By Lionel Laurent LONDON (Reuters) - European equities edged higher in early trade on Wednesday, extending gains from Tuesday after a batch of positive earnings and U.S. economic data briefly calmed worries over stretched valuations and the pace of economic recovery. The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 share index was 0.3 percent higher at 0742 GMT, buoyed by better-than-expected earnings from German automaker Daimler and Dutch paint-and-chemicals firm AkzoNobel. Gains were more muted in Europe - where the pace of economic recovery and the impact of a Russia slowdown have worried investors - than in much of Asia or the United States, where stocks hit fresh milestones and where earnings from bellwethers such as Apple Inc and Verizon topped forecasts. `Geopolitical tensions are preventing a better market development in Europe,` said Christian Stocker, equity strategist at UniCredit.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014  10:28


World - South Africa: Rhino poacher gets 77 years in jail

JOHANNESBURG (AP) A rhino poacher in South Africa has been sentenced to 77 years in prison in one of the heaviest penalties aimed at curbing poachers who target rhinos for their horns, which fetch a high price on the illegal market in parts of Asia.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014  10:28


Business - With sales sputtering, Apple`s iPad looks to IBM alliance

By Christina Farr SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Apple Inc`s iPad is losing steam just four years after its release, but an alliance with International Business Machines Corp could rejuvenate a flagging product by entering into a largely untapped corporate market. Apple shipped 13.2 million iPads in the June quarter, 8 percent fewer than a year earlier and lagging Wall Street`s forecast for 14 million or more. Apple helped create the tablet market in 2010 with its first iPad. Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook described iPad sales as `very bifurcated` - they continue to grow at 50 percent or above in emerging markets such as the Middle East and China, but in developed countries like the United States, the `market is weaker.` Research firm IDC lowered its forecast for 2014 worldwide tablet demand growth to 12.1 percent - a fraction of the 51.8 percent expansion of 2013.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014  02:43


Business - Apple revenue lags Street`s view despite strong China growth

By Christina Farr and Edwin Chan SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Apple Inc posted a smaller-than-expected 6 percent rise in quarterly revenue on Tuesday, but revenue surged 28 percent in greater China despite stiff competition in its third-largest market. It sold 35.2 million iPhones in the June quarter, a rise of about 13 percent that was in line with analysts` projections, helped by a strong performance in an Asian market considered crucial to Apple`s longer-term growth prospects. Chief Executive Tim Cook told analysts on a conference call that Apple`s Chinese performance was `honestly surprising.` Unit iPhone sales iPhones jumped about 48 percent and Mac computer sales rose 39 percent in the June quarter, Chief Financial Officer Luca Maestri said in an interview. This month, Samsung Electronics Co Ltd estimated April-June operating profit far below most analysts` forecasts, as its Galaxy S5 sold more slowly than expected in the face of severe competition. `We have a really good runway in front of us with China Mobile,` Maestri said, referring to Apple`s main carrier partner in the world`s No. 2 economy.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014  23:12


Business - Asia stocks rise as focus shifts from risk aversion, Aussie spikes

By Shinichi Saoshiro TOKYO (Reuters) - An index of Asian shares touched a fresh three-year high on Wednesday as some markets focused on company earnings more than geopolitical tensions while the Australian dollar spiked on stronger-than-expected inflation data. `Despite yesterday`s strong rebound in Europe, we look set to start on the back foot this morning after a slightly negative reaction to the latest earnings announcements from Microsoft and Apple, after the bell last night,` Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets, said in a note. Apple Inc posted a smaller-than-expected 6 percent rise in quarterly revenue, while Microsoft Corp MSFT.O said it aims to get its loss-making Nokia phone unit to break even within two years after it reported a 7 percent dip in quarterly profit. Violence continued in Gaza, but hopes rose for an easing of tension in Ukraine after pro-Russian rebels handed the flight recorders and victims` remains from a downed Malaysian airliner to international authorities.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014  07:35


Business - Watch what markets don`t do as world politics turns nasty

By Mike Dolan LONDON (Reuters) - Like so much in the investment world of late, it`s what financial markets are not doing right now that is most intriguing. Over the course of the past month, conflicts, superpower standoffs and economic sanctions have flared in Iraq and Syria, Israel and Gaza, Ukraine and Russia. Yet the world`s main financial markets have barely blinked. Crude oil prices gyrated briefly on the upsurge in the Iraq/Syria violence but net moves have been slight to non-existent.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014  07:21


Business - U.S. SEC poised to adopt reforms for money market funds

By Sarah N. Lynch WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. regulators are expected to adopt rules on Wednesday that force `prime` money market funds used by large institutions to float their share price. Proponents have suggested that moving from the current stable $1 per share net asset value (NAV) to a floating NAV would help prevent investors from getting spooked by the prospect of funds `breaking the buck,` or falling lower than that amount. The reform will impact a wide variety of asset managers, from Blackrock Inc, Fidelity and Vanguard to Charles Schwab Corp, Pimco and Federated Investors Inc. The two-pronged reform for the $2.6 trillion industry comes after a long battle between the SEC, the industry and federal banking regulators. The industry and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce have warned that any rules that drastically change the structure of money market funds could cut off a major supply of short-term funding for corporations.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014  05:22


Business - Ukraine nerves send European shares lower

By Patrick Graham LONDON (Reuters) - European stock markets fell across the board on Monday, concerned by an escalation in tensions between Russia and the West and reports the Ukrainian army was moving on a major rebel stronghold. The step up in rhetoric over Russia`s involvement following last week`s downing of a Malaysian airliner had offered hope for some investors that stronger action by Western powers could push the conflict toward a peaceful conclusion. `The Ukraine situation has the potential to get ever worse,` said Hantec Markets analyst Richard Perry, referring to the reports out of Donetsk at the start of European trading. Asian markets - excluding Japan which was closed for a holiday - had gained 0.3 percent on the back of a strong finish for Wall Street on Friday on upbeat U.S. corporate earnings, with more reports due this week.

Monday, July 21, 2014  10:10


Business - SEC poised to end $1 a share for some money funds

WASHINGTON (AP) Regulators are expected to vote Wednesday to end a longtime staple of the investment industry the fixed $1 share price for money-market mutual funds at least for some money funds used by big investors.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014  06:15


World - Asia stocks bolstered by US earnings, home sales

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) Asian stock markets posted moderate gains Wednesday, bolstered by solid U.S. earnings and home sales. Indonesian stocks advanced after the official vote count showed Joko Widodo the clear winner of a bitterly contested presidential election.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014  06:01

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