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EBay wins approval for South Korean acquisition

April 23, 2009 1:43 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Ebay Inc. has won regulatory approval to acquire online marketplace Gmarket, South Korea's antitrust watchdog said Thursday.The Korea Fair Trade Commission's approval included various conditions for a period of three years such as keeping increases in registration and...

Novartis posts 14 percent drop in Q1 profit

April 23, 2009 1:37 am | by ALEXANDER G. HIGGINS - Associated Press Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

GENEVA (AP) — Pharmaceuticals maker Novartis AG reported Thursday a 14 percent decline in first-quarter net profit in part due to shifts in currency values as well as the cost of financing its takeover of the Alcon eye care company.Novartis said the profit of $1.98 billion compared with $2.3...

Australia approves Chinese bid for Oz Minerals

April 23, 2009 1:22 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — China's Minmetals won Australian government approval Thursday to buy most of miner Oz Minerals' operations in a deal that excludes a mine in a sensitive military area.Minmetals promised to use mostly Australian managers and to expand production at some sites as conditions...

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EU court backs Dior on resale dispute

April 23, 2009 1:02 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

LUXEMBOURG (AP) — The European Union's highest court ruled Thursday that Dior luxury fashion company can bar the resale of its goods by discount stores.The Court of Justice said Dior can prevent a licensee from passing on goods to discount stores if it "damages the allure and prestigious image...

Barroso: EU must help poor despite recession

April 23, 2009 12:42 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Commission's president says the EU must continue to be the world's primary donor of aid to poor nations despite the global recession.Jose Manuel Barroso says poor countries "are the least responsible for this crisis but among the worst affected." He says the recession...

Japan's Mizuho Financial forecasts annual net loss

April 23, 2009 12:16 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

TOKYO (AP) — Mizuho Financial Group Inc., Japan's second-biggest bank, warned Thursday that it sank into the red last fiscal year amid mounting bad loans and steep stock market declines.The Tokyo-based lender slashed its earnings guidance for the 12 months through March 31, saying it expects a...

Euro nearly unchanged against dollar at $1.3024

April 22, 2009 11:56 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

FRANKFURT (AP) — The euro was nearly flat against the dollar Thursday despite news that Germany's economy, Europe's largest, was expected to shrink more than 5 percent this year.The 16-nation euro bought $1.3024 in European morning trading, slightly up from the $1.3017 late Wednesday in New...

California farmers to get slight drought relief

April 22, 2009 11:36 pm | by GARANCE BURKE - Associated Press Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

FRESNO, Calif. (AP) — Farmers in California's drought-stricken agricultural basin finally will get a meager supply of federal water to nurture their crops this summer.Officials with the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation said Tuesday that heavy storms in March allowed them to boost the amount of water sent...

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Japan automakers extend output slump in March

April 22, 2009 11:10 pm | by TOMOKO A. HOSAKA - Associated Press Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

TOKYO (AP) — Japan's top automakers reported deep production declines in March as the unprecedented collapse in global demand maintained its painful grip on one of the country's key industries.Toyota Motor Corp., the world's biggest automaker, said its worldwide production slid 46 percent in March...

Credit Suisse reports Q1 net profit of 2B francs

April 22, 2009 10:55 pm | by FRANK JORDANS - Associated Press Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

ZURICH (AP) — Swiss banking giant Credit Suisse on Thursday reported a first-quarter net profit of 2 billion Swiss francs ($1.72 billion), following a turnaround in its investment bank, which had previously been hit hard by the credit crunch.The figure was better than analysts' expectations for a...

Hong Kong tycoon drops $2 billion bid for PCCW

April 22, 2009 10:35 pm | by JEREMIAH MARQUEZ - AP Business Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

HONG KONG (AP) — A Hong Kong tycoon abandoned his controversial $2 billion plan to take over the city's biggest telecom company Thursday after a court blocked the deal, handing regulators and minority shareholders a high-profile victory.Richard Li, chairman of fixed-line operator PCCW, said in a...

WSJ: BofA CEO says was told to be quiet on Merrill

April 22, 2009 9:34 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — Bank of America Chief Executive Kenneth Lewis told the New York attorney general he believed former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke wanted him to keep quiet about the worsening terms of the bank's acquisition of Merrill Lynch, according to testimony...

Hyundai Motor says first quarter net profit slumps

April 22, 2009 9:19 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Hyundai Motor, South Korea's largest automaker, said net profit dived 42.7 percent in the first quarter as sales fell amid the global slump.The maker of the Sonata, Elantra and luxury Genesis earned 225 billion won ($166.7 million) in the three months ended March 31, down...

Honda mulling investment request from Pioneer

April 22, 2009 9:08 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

TOKYO (AP) — Honda Motor Co. said Thursday it is considering investing in Pioneer Corp., the ailing Japanese audiovisual products maker that's seeking to bolster its capital base.The Nikkei financial daily reported that Japan's No. 2 automaker is finalizing plans for a capital tie-up worth several...

European stocks steady despite US cheer over Apple

April 22, 2009 8:58 pm | by JEREMIAH MARQUEZ - AP Business Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

LONDON (AP) — European stock markets were little changed Thursday ahead of an expected solid opening on Wall Street, where investors appear to have been cheered by upbeat earnings from technology firm Apple Inc.The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares was up 22.87 points, or 0.6 percent, at...

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