News Wire

France's EDF buys 49 pct stake in Conergies Group

11h56 French state-controlled power utility EDF has bought a 49 percent stake for an undisclosed amount in African company Conergies Group.  Full story

-Tesla to cut production hours for Model S and X

23h01 Tesla Inc said on Wednesday it is reducing production hours for higher-priced Model S and Model X cars, just days after saying it would cut jobs as the electric carmaker looks to make more. . .  Full story

Trump says U.S. doing well in trade negotiations with China

22h48 U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that the United States was doing well in trade talks with China.. . .  Full story

Verizon cuts 7 pct of jobs in media unit

22h42 Verizon Communications Inc is cutting about 7 percent, or about 800 jobs, at its media unit, it said on Wednesday.. . .  Full story

U.S. bond yields rise as Wall Street stabilizes

22h41 U.S. Treasury yields rose on Wednesday as Wall Street stock prices stabilized a day after posting heavy losses, reducing safe-haven demand for bonds even as investors remained worried about slowing economic growth and trade tensions.. . .  Full story

U.S. soybeans firm on South America weather worries

22h40 U.S. soybean futures rose on Wednesday on worries about poor crop weather reducing yield potential in South America, analysts said, while traders continued to watch for any developments in U.S. trade relations with top global. . .  Full story

Oil slips as EU seeks to trade with Iran, U.S. gasoline prices fall

22h37 Oil prices slipped on Wednesday as the European Union seeks to circumvent U.S. trade sanctions against Iran, and on weaker U.S. gasoline prices.. . .  Full story

Stocks seesaw, dollar off; global, U.S. worries weigh

22h33 Stocks oscillated between positive and negative territory on Wednesday as worries over U.S. politics, global economic growth and trade tensions offset a boost from quarterly earnings reports.. . .  Full story

Democrats push technology as alternative to Trump wall in shutdown impasse

22h26 Democratic leaders in the U.S. House of Representatives floated the idea on Wednesday of ending a partial government shutdown by giving President Donald Trump most or all of the money he seeks for border. . .  Full story

New Zealand reviews capital markets in bid to attract IPOs

22h14 New Zealand's exchange operator NZX and the country's financial regulator have begun a review of its capital markets in a bid to rekindle interest in equity listings.. . .  Full story

Cotton futures rise on hopes of U.S.-China trade deal

21h57 ICE cotton futures rose on Wednesday as investors bid for the natural fiber in anticipation of a trade deal between the United States and China. * The most active cotton. . .  Full story

Dollar weak as trade, growth worries cloud outlook

21h56 The dollar edged down against a basket of currencies on Wednesday as uncertainties over trade and the global economy clouded the U.S. currency's near-term outlook and restricted it to tight trading ranges against other major. . .  Full story

Wall St mixed as shutdown, trade tensions dampen upbeat earnings

21h54 Wall Street struggled for direction on Wednesday, as early gains driven by a spate of upbeat earnings were offset by concerns about a potential economic downturn, trade tensions and longest government shutdown in U.S.. . .  Full story

Ecuador may accept IMF help to reduce deficit, international debt

21h46 Ecuador may use financing from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to balance its budget, as the South American country seeks to reduce a swollen fiscal deficit and its international debt, the finance minister said. . .  Full story

Gold steadies as stocks pullback dents risk sentiment

21h29 Gold prices steadied on Wednesday, clawing back from losses made earlier in the session, as a recovery in stock markets fizzled out on concerns over geopolitical and economic uncertainty, triggering investors to seek safety in. . .  Full story

Activist target Pernod boosts board independence with new role

20h38 French spirits group Pernod Ricard named business veteran Patricia Barbizet to the newly created role of lead independent director on Wednesday as it faces pressure from activist investor Elliott to improve its governance.. . .  Full story

Huawei executive has strong case against extradition -Canadian envoy

20h32 A top executive from Huawei Technologies Co Ltd being held in Canada can make "strong arguments" against extradition to the United States, in part due to President Donald Trump's politicization of the case, Canada's ambassador. . .  Full story

Impact on U.S. government widens on 33rd day of shutdown

20h04 The longest U.S. government shutdown in history reached its 33rd day on Wednesday with most of the 800,000 employees who have been furloughed or are working without pay poised to miss their second paychecks.. . .  Full story

India's ruling party could face electoral wipeout in most populous state, poll shows

20h00 Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ruling party could lose a quarter of its seats in India's parliament with an electoral wipeout in the most populous state, if the Congress Party were to join an opposition. . .  Full story

The World Economic Forum at Davos

19h59 World leaders and top CEOs meet at Davos in Switzerland this week to discuss how to steer policy amid worries of slowing economic growth, damaging trade wars and Brexit. Reuters. . .  Full story

Italy's Popolare Bari studying tie-up with other southern banks - sources

19h58 Popolare di Bari is studying a possible tie-up with other local mutual banks, two sources said, as the Rome government said it was keeping an eye on the situation at the troubled southern Italian. . .  Full story

Despite 60 pct support, Canada's Husky scrapped MEG oil merger

19h57 When the final numbers were tallied late last Wednesday for Husky Energy's hostile bid for rival Canadian oil producer MEG Energy, Husky's top executives learned they had the support of nearly 60 percent of MEG. . .  Full story

China says it can achieve sustainable economic growth

19h46 China's economy can maintain sustainable rates of growth despite global uncertainties, Vice President Wang Qishan said on Wednesday, days after the world's second-largest economy posted its weakest expansion in nearly three decades.. . .  Full story

P&G bets on demand for high-end fabric, skin-care products

19h39 Procter & Gamble Co raised its sales forecast for the year on Wednesday after quarterly results topped Wall Street expectations, boosted by price hikes and strong demand for premium fabric and skin care products.. . .  Full story

Apollo Global to buy packaging group RPC for 3.3 bln pounds

19h31 Apollo Global Management is to buy packaging products maker RPC Group for 3.3 billion pounds ($4.28 billion) in cash after months of negotiations, marking the latest M&A deal for an industry in the midst. . .  Full story

Aluminium trades near one-month high on signs of tighter LME market

19h28 Aluminium climbed to a one-month high on Wednesday as signs of a rise in demand caused by a fall in inventories on the London Metal Exchange (LME) attracted buyers.. . .  Full story

UK shares fall again as weak results add to global growth worries

19h26 UK shares slipped on Wednesday as fresh worries about global economic growth weighed on oil stocks while a stronger pound also pulled down multinational stocks, with Metro Bank losing over a third of its. . .  Full story

European shares sluggish as poor updates add to macro gloom

19h26 European shares were sluggish on Wednesday as a batch of poor corporate updates added to worries about a global growth slowdown and China-U.S. trade negotiations.. . .  Full story

India's finance minister Jaitley will not present budget as faces surgery-source

19h16 India's Finance Minister Arun Jaitley will not present the government's crucial interim budget next week because he is expected to undergo surgery, according to a source familiar with the matter. He has been replaced. . .  Full story

Markets will push Trump into a trade deal - China regulator

19h07 A top Chinese markets regulator voiced confidence on Wednesday that Beijing and Washington would resolve their trade dispute, suggesting market pressure would ultimately push U.S. President Donald Trump into a deal.. . .  Full story

BoE's Woods says Barclays CEO fine sends whistleblowing signal

19h04 The million pound fine and censure handed down to Barclays boss Jes Staley over how he handled a whistleblowing case was correctly calibrated and sent a clear message to the industry, Bank of England. . .  Full story

General Electric to cut close to 470 jobs in France-unions

19h03 General Electric, which bought Alstom's energy business in 2015, aims to slash close to 470 jobs across the division in France in the face of falling orders worldwide, unions said on Wednesday.. . .  Full story

Norway gas to benefit from end to coal in Germany - Equinor

19h03 Norway, Germany's third biggest gas supplier after Russia and the Netherlands, could make further inroads into the German market as the country phases out coal, a top executive at Norwegian oil and gas firm. . .  Full story

Barnier to UK MPs: Agree alternative to stop no deal

18h44 EU negotiator Michel Barnier warned British lawmakers on Wednesday that their disparate efforts to amend, delay or thwart Brexit will see Britain crash out of the EU in March if they cannot rally behind. . .  Full story

Lawyers suing Fiat Chrysler in diesel case seek over $100 mln

18h42 Lawyers for Fiat Chrysler diesel owners have asked a U.S. judge to approve up to $106.5 million in legal fees and out-of-pocket costs for a settlement over excess vehicle emissions.. . .  Full story

Germany to fund research facility for EV battery technology

18h38 The German government will fund a research facility to offer firms in Germany know-how to develop battery cells for electric vehicles (EVs), the science minister said on Wednesday, seeking to compete with Asian producers. . .  Full story

Why Davos is talking about the fight between two absentees

18h38 The two most powerful men in the world are not in Davos this year, but they remain impossible to escape.. . .  Full story

Trade experts dismiss Brexiteers' faith in obscure WTO clause

18h35 Trade experts have poured cold water on the idea that Britain could invoke an obscure clause in the international trade rules if it leaves the European Union without an agreement, but they say the. . .  Full story

PM Conte sees Italian economy surging from mid-2019

18h35 The Italian economy will grow much more strongly than expected in 2019, with output likely to jump in the second half of the year, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte told Reuters on Wednesday.. . .  Full story

Euro zone bond yields slip after BoJ signals stimulus set to stay

18h26 Most euro zone bond yields fell on Wednesday after the Bank of Japan set the tone for further easing ahead by warning of rising risks to its economy, focusing investors' attention on Thursday's European. . .  Full story

United Tech profit beats forecasts on aerospace jump

18h20 United Technologies Corp beat analysts' estimates for fourth-quarter profit on Wednesday, boosted by a more than 20 percent sales surge at its aerospace businesses, sending the industrial conglomerate's shares higher.. . .  Full story

UK watchdog lays out oversight of cryptocurrencies

18h18 Britain's markets watchdog set out which aspects of the nascent cryptocurrency industry it regulates on Wednesday, as volatile digital assets come under greater scrutiny.. . .  Full story

Bank of Italy official says Carige offers strengths for buyer

18h15 A top Bank of Italy official said on Wednesday he hoped that Banca Carige could find a merger partner within a reasonable time and added the troubled bank had strengths which could benefit a. . .  Full story

Union at Audi's Hungarian business calls one-week strike

18h13 Workers at German carmaker Audi's Hungarian business will go on a one-week strike for higher wages from Thursday, the president of the AHFSZ trade union was quoted by state news agency MTI as saying. . .  Full story

UK PM May's spokesman says unaware of any discussions about suspending parliament

18h10 British Prime Minister Theresa May's spokesman said on Wednesday he was not aware of any discussions about suspending parliament after the idea was suggested by a prominent eurosceptic politician should lawmakers try to block Brexit.. . .  Full story

India's IndiGo to push international growth for higher profit

17h59 IndiGo, India's biggest airline by market share, will take more deliveries of the longer-range Airbus A321neo aircraft next year as it plans to launch more international flights, its interim CEO said on Wednesday after the. . .  Full story

Sterling rallies above $1.30 on Brexit delay push

17h51 Sterling leapt to a 10-week high on Wednesday after Britain's opposition Labour Party said it would back an attempt by lawmakers to prevent a disorderly no-deal Brexit.. . .  Full story

Deutsche faces questions from authorities investigating Danske

17h47 Deutsche Bank said on Wednesday it had received requests for information from regulators and law enforcement agencies around the world that are investigating a money laundering scheme involving Danske Bank.. . .  Full story

China's CATL plans battery cell production of 60 GWh from 2026 at German plant

17h45 Chinese battery maker Contemporary Amperex Technology Ltd (CATL) eyes an annual production of 60 gigawatt hours (GWh) from 2026 at its first European production site in Germany, a senior CATL manager said on Wednesday.. . .  Full story

Deutsche Bank CEO says bank cooperating with German prosecutors

17h34 The chief executive of Deutsche Bank, Christian Sewing, said on Wednesday the lender had the biggest interest in cooperating with German prosecutors who searched its offices in November as part of an investigation into money. . .  Full story

Bank of England says TSB outage probe still on-going

17h31 The Bank of England's investigation into last year's costly IT meltdown at TSB bank that hit customers is still ongoing, the BoE's deputy governor Sam Woods told lawmakers on Wednesday.. . .  Full story

Bank of England says EU bank registrations on track for post-Brexit London

17h28 The Bank of England's preparations for Britain's departure from the European Union are "broadly on track", with 80 banks and insurers from the bloc applying to keep London offices as branches, BoE Deputy Governor Sam. . .  Full story

OPEC cuts, outages give physical crude a New Year lift

17h26 Crude oil markets in Europe and West Africa have made a strong start to 2019 as Libyan supply losses and strong demand in Asia offset rising U.S. exports.. . .  Full story

Merkel calls for global cooperation to reach 'win-win outcomes'

17h25 German Chancellor Angela Merkel delivered a robust defence of the post-war multilateral order on Wednesday, lauding compromise as a virtue in international relations in a veiled criticism of U.S. President Donald Trump.. . .  Full story

TSX gains as Poloz assures economy in good shape

17h21 Canada's main stock index rose on Wednesday after Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz assured the Canadian economy is in good shape.. . .  Full story

U.S. oil firms tell OPEC their growth will slow

16h52 U.S. oil producers sought on Wednesday to soothe OPEC's worries about losing market share, telling the group that investors in the U.S. firms wanted a reduction in growth and higher payouts.. . .  Full story

Brazil stocks rise in broad-based rally, soft dollar lifts Latam currencies

16h47 Stocks in Brazil's benchmark index rose on Wednesday to near record-high levels, tracking broad-based gains in global equities as investors returned to riskier assets and on recovering oil prices. A weaker. . .  Full story

Argentine c.bank chief says looking at forex purchase limit

16h46 Argentine Central Bank Governor Guido Sandleris said on Wednesday that the bank's monetary policy committee would be looking at its current daily limit on foreign exchange purchases of up to $50 million.. . .  Full story

Pakistan unveils tax cuts, incentives to boost growth

16h41 Pakistani Finance Minister Asad Umar unveiled a package of measures on Wednesday to boost exports and investment and help Islamabad address a severe balance of payments squeeze that has forced it to turn to. . .  Full story

TSX opens higher on gains in consumer discretionary, energy shares

16h41 Canada's main stock index opened higher on Wednesday, driven by gains in shares of consumer discretionary and energy companies.. . .  Full story

Kenya to restrict second-hand imports to boost domestic car sector

16h36 Kenya plans to restrict imports of second-hand cars to newer vehicles in an effort to boost the domestic automotive sector by reducing the dominance of the used car market.. . .  Full story

C$ firms with oil but gains tempered by weak retail sales data

16h33 The Canadian dollar edged higher against its U.S. counterpart on Wednesday, recovering from an earlier two-week low, as gains for stocks and oil prices offset domestic data showing a bigger-than-expected drop in domestic retail sales.. . .  Full story

Former Barclays bosses hid 322 mln pounds in Qatar fees in 2008, court told

16h31 Four former Barclays executives conspired to commit fraud by hiding 322 million pounds of payments to Qatar in return for cash injections in 2008, a prosecutor alleged at the opening of one of London's most. . .  Full story

Brazilian state eyes more tax breaks for automakers -newspaper

16h20 The governor of Brazil's Sao Paulo state said additional tax breaks may be extended to all automakers operating in the state, newspaper Valor Economico reported on Wednesday, suggesting that pressure from General Motors Co could. . .  Full story

Deripaska debt to VTB not written off under En+ sanctions deal -Interfax

16h14 VTB Bank is not writing off debt owed by Oleg Deripaska under a deal to lift U.S. sanctions from Russia's En+ Group, VTB First Deputy CEO Yuri Soloviev was quoted as saying by Interfax. . .  Full story

Unwinding a Big Short: Sterling finds even keel as Brexit endgame plays out

16h09 Selling pounds has been a favourite game of the $5.1 trillion-a-day global currency market for over two years. But as the Brexit endgame plays out and 'worst case' scenarios ebb, market metrics and dynamics. . .  Full story

Up to Britain to define post-Brexit ties with EU- Merkel

16h03 Germany and its European Union partners have an interest in a close relationship with Britain after it leaves the bloc, Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Wednesday, adding that it was now up to London. . .  Full story

RWE shares up on hopes for higher coal exit compensation

16h03 Shares in RWE, Germany's largest power producer, rose almost 5 percent on Wednesday at the prospect of higher compensation should coal-fired power stations be shut down early.. . .  Full story

Russian oil output edges up to 11.39 mln bpd during Jan. 1-22 -source

15h56 Russia slightly increased its oil production to 11.39 million barrels per day (bpd) on average between Jan. 1 and Jan 22, a source familiar with the Energy Ministry data told Reuters on Wednesday.. . .  Full story

India to spend 6.5 pct more on food subsidies in FY 2019-20 - sources

15h51 India is poised to raise the subsidies for the world's biggest food welfare programme by 6.5 percent for the fiscal year beginning April 1, the smallest increase in three years, in the nation's interim. . .  Full story

Financials lift Dubai, most major Gulf markets gain

15h36 The Dubai stock market snapped a three day losing streak on Wednesday, boosted by its financial and property shares, while Saudi Arabia rose on the back of its banks. The Dubai. . .  Full story

Italy's Salvini hopes Macron's support dwindles at EU elections

15h32 Italian Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini said on Wednesday he hoped the French people would not choose President Emmanuel Macron's party in European parliament elections later this year, drawing a sharp response from officials in. . .  Full story

Leu hits record low on tax worry, dovish comments hurt crown

15h32 Worries over Romania's new taxes sent the leu to another record low on Wednesday, while the crown set a 3-week low after dovish comments from Czech central bank rate setter Tomas Holub.. . .  Full story

Russia's Lukoil opposes prolonged global oil output cuts

15h30 The global oil output cut should not be prolonged, the head of Russia's second biggest oil producer, Lukoil, said on Wednesday, Interfax news agency reported.. . .  Full story

Norway wealth fund bought stakes in U.S. logistics properties

15h29 Norway's sovereign wealth fund, the world's biggest, has bought six logistics properties in Chicago, Nashville and Orlando together with real estate partner Prologis, the fund said on Wednesday.. . .  Full story

South Africa president assures central bank independence

15h28 South African President Cyril Ramaphosa pledged on Wednesday that his government would not interfere with the independence of the Reserve Bank, despite a proposal by the ruling party to broaden its focus to boost employment. . .  Full story

No let-up in Chinese semiconductor demand, supplier ASML says

15h17 Chinese demand for semiconductor manufacturing equipment has not slackened, despite a slowdown in the country's economic growth and trade frictions with the United States, the chief executive of toolmaker ASML Holding NV told Reuters on. . .  Full story

DAVOS-Italy's Tria keeps door open to Weidmann's ECB bid

15h16 Italy's economy minister kept the door open on Wednesday to the potential appointment of Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann as next head of the European Central Bank, saying past stances should not weigh on the decision.. . .  Full story

Newcomers pile into race for Qatar LNG

15h09 Qatar is preparing to issue a tender for energy firms seeking a stake in its gas expansion project, drawing interest from long-standing partners as well as newcomers Chevron, Norway's Equinor and Italy's Eni, industry sources. . .  Full story

Russia's Alrosa says sales down in January - Interfax

15h07 Sales by Russia's Alrosa , the world's largest producer of rough diamonds in carat terms, are lower than a year ago so far in January, its chief executive was quoted as saying by Interfax. . .  Full story

Metro Bank shares crash as risky mortgage bets raise cash call fears

15h02 Metro Bank shares lost a third of their value on Wednesday after the British lender announced a sharp rise in exposure to higher-risk mortgages and said profits would be hit by slowing growth, raising. . .  Full story

-Japan's Abe to put trade, climate at top of G20 to-do list

14h51 Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Wednesday he will seek to use his chairmanship of the Group of 20 leading economies to rebuild trust in the global trade system and foster consensus. . .  Full story

DAVOS-Russia says oil price war with U.S. would be too costly

14h44 Russia should not unleash an oil price war against the United States but rather stick with output cuts even at the cost of losing market share in the medium term, one of the main. . .  Full story

Italy minister Tria says crisis banks pose no systemic threat

14h42 Italian Economy Minister Giovanni Tria said on Wednesday he sees no systemic threat from lenders Monte dei Paschi, Carige or Popolare di Bari but is following developments.. . .  Full story

Tria says Italy will hit budget goal, no need for correction

14h38 Italy will meet its key budget deficit target for this year and there is no need for any corrective measures to prevent an overshoot, Economy Minister Giovanni Tria said on Wednesday.. . .  Full story

EU will do all it can to avoid hard Irish border after Brexit - Commission

14h36 The European Union's executive said on Wednesday the bloc would do its utmost to avoid extensive border controls between EU member state Ireland and the British province of Northern Ireland regardless of how Brexit goes,. . .  Full story

Marex Spectron to acquire Energy Broking Ireland Ltd

14h32 Commodities broker Marex Spectron said on Wednesday it has agreed to acquire Dublin-based Energy Broking Ireland Ltd (EBI), in a deal expected to be completed in February.. . .  Full story

Malaysia could curb French purchases if palm oil use restricted

14h30 Malaysia will consider laws to restrict imports of French products if Paris does not withdraw plans to curb the use of palm oil in biofuels, Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said in a letter to. . .  Full story

Davos - Total CEO says influx of U.S. oil exports could weigh on prices

14h20 An expected increase in U.S. oil exports could weigh on oil prices towards the end of the year, the chief executive of French energy company Total said on Wednesday.. . .  Full story

INSIGHT-U.S. airlines tap army helicopter pilots to ease shortage

14h00 U.S. Army pilot Shaun Perez spent ten hours flying an Apache helicopter over Afghanistan, providing gun cover for Special Forces soldiers on the ground as they hunted for high-value targets, guns and weapons.. . .  Full story

Sri Lanka rupee edges down on importer, state bank dollar demand

13h43 ** Sri Lanka's rupee closed slightly weaker on Wednesday due to dollar demand from importers and state banks, while investors remained cautious over debt repayment by the government. ** Stocks edged higher from an eight-week. . .  Full story

Orsted says grid sale setback will not stop expansion

13h40 A setback for Danish energy group Orsted's plans to sell its domestic power network and private customer businesses will not derail its global expansion drive, the company's head of offshore wind said on Wednesday.. . .  Full story

Edouard Carmignac relinquishes full control of flagship Carmignac fund

13h33 Veteran French fund manager Edouard Carmignac has handed over full control of his company's flagship Carmignac Patrimoine fund to two colleagues, in line with plans set out last year.. . .  Full story

China approves plan for new tech exchange in Shanghai - Xinhua

13h17 China has approved a plan to set up a Nasdaq-style board for tech companies in Shanghai aimed at improving their ability to raise funds, the official Xinhua news agency reported on Wednesday.. . .  Full story

Sterling rises after UK's Labour backs bid to avoid no-deal Brexit

13h13 Sterling rose above $1.3 on Wednesday after Britain's opposition Labour Party said it was "highly likely" to back an attempt by lawmakers to prevent a disorderly no-deal Brexit.. . .  Full story

Santander plans to axe a fifth of its UK branch network

13h11 Santander on Wednesday announced plans to shut almost a fifth of its branch network in Britain, expected to result in around 840 job losses.. . .  Full story

Japan's Abe calls for transition period in Britain's exit from EU

13h11 Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Wednesday he hopes there is a transitional period for Britain's exit from the European Union as many Japanese companies have made investment inroads into the country.. . .  Full story

Shutdown enters 33rd day with no breakthrough in sight as U.S. Senate sets votes

13h00 There was no sign of quick relief for 800,000 federal workers going without pay because of the partial government shutdown as the U.S. Senate scheduled votes on competing proposals to end the month-long impasse. . .  Full story

-Trump won't soften hardline on China to make trade deal-advisers

13h00 As much as U.S. President Donald Trump wants to boost markets through a trade pact with China, he will not soften his position that Beijing must make real structural reforms, including how it handles. . .  Full story

Burberry says would pay a high price for no-deal Brexit

12h49 Britain's premier luxury brand Burberry said a no-deal Brexit would cost it tens of millions of pounds in tariffs and severely disrupt the movement of fabrics and finished products between its suppliers, manufacturing centres and. . .  Full story

China's CNOOC boosts spending target to 5-yr high, increases domestic drilling

12h44 China's state-owned offshore oil and gas producer CNOOC Ltd said it is confident of achieving its spending target this year, the highest since 2014, as its responds to a call to build up the nation's. . .  Full story

Gin, coffee sales give Wetherspoon Christmas cheer

12h35 British pub operator JD Wetherspoon Plc said it enjoyed strong sales over the Christmas period, helped by Britons' new-found fondness for gin and solid demand for coffee drinks.. . .  Full story

China's Xi says to push reforms in key areas - Xinhua

12h27 China's President Xi Jinping said on Wednesday that Beijing will push forward reforms in key areas, the official Xinhua news agency reported.. . .  Full story