December 8, 2014 / 1:42 PM / 3 years ago

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TOP STORIES

Euro zone warning hits stocks, currency as oil plumbs depths

LONDON - European stocks and the euro wallow amid a stark warning about the currency bloc's economic prospects, keeping pressure on rock-bottom oil prices following weak data from Asia. (MARKETS-GLOBAL/ (WRAPUP 6), moving shortly, by John Geddie, 545 words)

+ See also:

- MARKETS-BONDS/EURO (UPDATE 2), moving shortly, by Emelia Sithole-Matarise, 550 words)

China faces more pressure as Nov imports drop unexpectedly, exports slow

BEIJING - China's imports fall unexpectedly in November while export growth slows, adding to concerns the world's second-largest economy could be facing a sharper slowdown and adding pressure on policymakers to ramp up stimulus measures. (CHINA-ECONOMY/TRADE (WRAPUP 1), moved, by Kevin Yao, 750 words)

Japan economy shrinks more than expected, backing Abe's tax decision

TOKYO - Japan's economy shrinks more than initially reported in the third quarter on declines in business investment, data shows, surprising markets and backing premier Shinzo Abe's recent decision to delay a second sales tax hike. (JAPAN-ECONOMY/GDP (UPDATE 2), moved, by Leika Kihara, 600 words)

+ See also:

- JAPAN-ECONOMY/BOJ, moved, by Leika Kihara, 690 words

Merck takes aim at superbugs, to buy Cubist in $8.4 bln deal

Merck & Co Inc says it will buy Cubist Pharmaceuticals Inc for $8.4 billion, giving the major drugmaker an entry into the market for drugs that target so-called superbugs. (CUBIST PHARMA-M&A/MERCK (UPDATE 1), moved, 255 words)

INSIGHT

Retirees' target date funds making hedge fund style bets

NEW YORK - A fast-growing segment of U.S. retirement plans is using hedge-fund type strategies to bet a small but increasing slice of their assets. (FUNDS-RETIREMENT/HEDGEFUNDS (INSIGHT), moved, by Jessica Toonkel, 980 words)

INVESTMENT

Obamacare helps private equity get its rehab clinic fix

Investors are pouring money into the operators of U.S. rehab centers as many more Americans get health care coverage for addiction treatment, driving up valuations and triggering a consolidation of businesses in the fragmented sector. (REHABCLINICS-M&A/PRIVATEEQUITY (DEALTALK), moved, by Olivia Oran, 915 wordS)

ECONOMY

ECB's Nowotny warns of 'massive' economic weakness

FRANKFURT - The euro zone's economy is weakening 'massively', one of the European Central Bank's policymakers warns, saying that printing fresh money to buy state bonds could help to stop the slide. (ECB-POLICY/ (UPDATE 1), moved, by John O'Donnell and Paul Carrel, 255 words)

+ See also:

- GERMANY-ECONOMY/OUTPUT (UPDATE 1), moved, 325 words

- FRANCE-ECONOMY/, moved, 200 words

- ECONOMY-GLOBAL/, moved, by Robin Emmott, 740 words

- ECB-POLICY/DRAGHI (ANALYSIS), moved, by Paul Taylor, 800 words

OECD lead indicators show European growth losing momentum

PARIS - Economic growth is set to continue losing momentum in Europe while the outlook is stable for most other major economies and in the OECD area as a whole, according to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development. OECD-ECONOMY/, moved, 190 words)

+ See also:

- EUROZONE-SENTIX/, moved, 255 words

Kuwait Petroleum sees oil at $65 a barrel for next 6-7 months

KUWAIT - Oil prices are likely to remain around $65 a barrel for the next six to seven months, the head of Kuwait's state oil company says. (KUWAIT-OIL/ (UPDATE 1), moved, 280 words)

+ See also:

- MARKETS-OIL/ (UPDATE 7), moved, by Jack Stubbs, 425 words

- RUSSIA-MARKETS/ROUBLE (UPDATE 2), moved, by Vladimir Abramov and Jason Bush, 385 words

EU draws up 1.3 trillion-euro wish list to revive economy

BRUSSELS - The European Union has drawn up a wish list of almost 2,000 projects worth 1.3 trillion euros ($1.59 trillion) for possible inclusion in an investment plan to revive growth and jobs without adding to countries' debts. (EU-INVESTMENTS/ (UPDATE 2, GRAPHIC), moving shortly, by Robin Emmott, 520 words)

+ See also:

- EUROZONE-BUDGETS/, moved, 415 words

EU still at odds on finance tax, 2016 start in doubt -diplomats

BRUSSELS - Eleven euro zone countries remain divided over a tax on financial transactions a day before a self-imposed deadline to agree on its broad outlines, casting doubt on whether the levy can be implemented in early 2016, diplomats say. (EU-TAX/ (UPDATE 2), moved, by Robin Emmott and Francesco Guarascio, 450 words)

EU's Moscovici: No decision on Monday on Greek bailout extension

BRUSSELS - Euro zone finance ministers will take no decision on Monday on any extension of Greece's bailout programme, which expires at the end of the year, the bloc's top economics official says. (EUROZONE-GREECE/ (UPDATE 1), moved, 370 words)

Dutch central bank trims forecasts as wary recovery continues

AMSTERDAM - The Dutch central bank trims its growth forecasts for the next two years in the half-yearly outlook it published on Monday, warning that slower global growth would hit demand in the export-oriented economy. (DUTCH-ECONOMY/FORECAST, moved, 380 words)

COMPANIES

Saint-Gobain seeks control of Sika but management rebels

PARIS/ZURICH - France's Saint-Gobain has offered 2.75 billion Swiss francs ($2.8 billion) to buy a controlling stake in chemicals group Sika, but the move is rejected by the Swiss firm's management, sparking a slide in both companies' shares. (SIKA-M&A/SAINT GOBAIN (UPDATE 3, PICTURE), moving shorlty, by Natalie Huet and Katharina Bart, 420 words)

RBS launches sale of Coutts, invites bids before Christmas-sources

SINGAPORE/HONG KONG - Royal Bank of Scotland Plc has launched the sale of private bank Coutts International and has invited at least 10 potential suitors, including Credit Suisse, Julius Baer and Malayan Banking Bhd to participate in an auction, sources say. (RBS-COUTTS/SALE, moved, 300 words)

Societe Generale pulls out of GVK Hancock's long-delayed coal project

MELBOURNE - Societe Generale suspends its involvement in financing a $10 billion coal mine, rail and port project being developed by India's GVK conglomerate and Australian billionaire Gina Rinehart, citing the project's years-long delay. (STE GENERALE-GVK HANCOCK/, moved, 400 words)

VW's Skoda to sell more than 1 million cars in 2014 for first time

PRAGUE - Czech car maker Skoda Auto, a unit of Volkswagen, will sell more than 1 million cars in a year for the first time in its history, it says. (VOLKSWAGEN-CZECH/SKODA, moved, 100 words)

Cheap commodities to spur global growth, China a bright spot - Trafigura

LONDON - Lower commodities prices will spur the global economy and China remains a boon for raw materials despite the country's recent weak data, Swiss trading house Trafigura's founder Claude Dauphin says as his firm reports a rise in core earnings. (TRAFIGURA-RESULTS/ (UPDATE 2), moved, by Dmitry Zhdannikov, 675 words)

Madison backs Qatari bid for Canary Wharf owner Songbird

LONDON - Songbird Estates shareholder Madison International Realty plans to accept Qatar Investment Authority's (QIA) offer for the British property company, the sovereign wealth fund beind the hostile bid says. (SONGBIRD-M&A/QIA (UPDATE 1), moved, by Simon Jessop, 200 words)

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