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McDonald’s drops plan to sell shares in Japan unit

TOKYO (Reuters) – McDonald’s Corp has put on hold plans to sell shares in its Japan unit, which recently returned to profit for the first time in three years after a series of food scandals shook consumer confidence in the chain.

South Korea court says Uber violated transport law, latest setback for U.S. firm

SEOUL (Reuters) – A South Korean court on Wednesday ruled that the ride-hailing group Uber Technologies Inc [UBER.UL] illegally used private vehicles for commercial purposes, in the latest legal setback for the U.S. firm in Asia’s fourth biggest economy.

Asian stocks hover near two-year highs on U.S. optimism, euro steady

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Asian stocks extended gains for a fifth consecutive day on Wednesday, as renewed optimism about the world’s biggest economy brightened the outlook for risk assets while the euro held on to previous gains as political concerns in France ebbed.

Trump tax plan will sharply slash corporate tax rates

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump is proposing to slash the corporate income tax rate and offer multinational businesses a steep tax break on overseas profits brought into the United States, officials said late on Tuesday.

Toshiba to replace auditor PwC over differences: Nikkei

TOKYO (Reuters) – Toshiba Corp has decided to replace its auditor after less than a year as the troubled electronics conglomerate struggles to win its approval on full-year financial statement, the Nikkei business daily reported.

UGG brand owner Deckers explores sale

(Reuters) – Deckers Outdoor Corp said on Tuesday it was exploring strategic alternatives, including a sale of the company, a month after an activist investor urged the apparel and accessories maker to sell itself.

Asia investors boost use of unorthodox data sources in battle to beat benchmarks

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Sometime in the third quarter of 2016, Blackrock’s scientific active equity team, which manages $80 billion globally, began picking up increased signs of construction activity on the ground in China by using satellite imagery.

Automakers ask California to ease rules for self-driving car tests

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Automakers on Tuesday urged the state of California to further ease its proposed regulations for autonomous vehicles, saying the state did not respond to their earlier objections by making enough revisions to its planned set of rules for self-driving cars.

AT&T revenue misses estimates as customers keep phones longer

(Reuters) – AT&T Inc’s quarterly revenue missed estimates due to lower equipment sales as customers held onto phones longer and rival wireless carriers offered new promotions on unlimited data plans, the No. 2 U.S. wireless carrier said on Tuesday.

Wells Fargo board gets black eye in shareholder vote

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla./BOSTON (Reuters) – Wells Fargo & Co shareholders showed displeasure with the scandal-hit bank’s board on Tuesday, offering scant support for a dozen directors, including Chairman Stephen Sanger, in a vote capping a contentious annual meeting.

Nasdaq tops 6,000 as earnings boost Wall St; U.S. tax code eyed

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The Nasdaq Composite hit a record high on Tuesday, while the Dow and S&P 500 brushed against recent peaks as strong earnings underscored the health of corporate America.

U.S. Supreme Court may limit where companies can be sued

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday appeared poised to clamp down on where corporations can be sued, a potential setback for plaintiffs’ lawyers who strive to bring cases in courts and locales they consider friendly.

McDonald’s profit beats as turnaround gains steam, shares at record high

(Reuters) – McDonald’s Corp reported a better-than-expected rise in quarterly profit and U.S. same-restaurant sales on lower costs, all-day breakfast, $1 drinks and promotions on its popular Big Macs, signaling the company’s plan to keep customers coming back to its restaurants has gained traction.

JetBlue delays some jet deliveries, swaps Airbus models

NEW YORK (Reuters) – JetBlue Airways Corp said it is postponing delivery of 13 aircraft scheduled for 2019 and 2020, and has swapped its 2018 Airbus order of A321neos to 11 A321ceos, which have an earlier engine design.

Citi meeting protest prompts apology on pipeline finance steps

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A brief, noisy protest by drum-beating young adults at Citigroup’s annual shareholder meeting on Tuesday evolved into an orderly exchange between an older tribal woman and the bank’s two top executives, who conceded it had approved investments in a North Dakota pipeline too quickly.

Consumer confidence slips; new home sales hit eight-month high

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. consumer confidence fell from a more than 16-year high in April, but a surge in new home sales to an eight-month high last month suggested underlying strength in the economy despite an apparent sharp slowdown in growth in the first quarter.

Exclusive: GE in talks with Irish firm on Chilean wind venture – sources

SANTIAGO (Reuters) – General Electric Co is in talks with an independent energy producer to make a significant move into wind power in Chile, two people with knowledge of the process told Reuters, as the conglomerate expands its global renewable footprint.

3M raises 2017 profit forecast; first-quarter results top estimates

(Reuters) – 3M Co , which makes Scotch tape and Post-it notes, raised its 2017 profit forecast and reported better-than-expected quarterly results, helped by growth across its major businesses.

Coca-Cola to cut 1,200 jobs, boosts savings target

(Reuters) – Coca-Cola Co said on Tuesday it would cut about 1,200 jobs as the beverage maker expands its savings target amid falling demand for fizzy drinks globally.

Exclusive: Boeing near decision to launch 737-10 jet – sources

PARIS (Reuters) – Boeing is nearing a decision to launch a larger version of its 737 workhorse jet within two months to counter strong sales of the Airbus A321neo, after a breakthrough on the design for one of its parts, industry sources said.

April U.S. auto sales seen down nearly 2 percent: JD Power and LMC

DETROIT (Reuters) – U.S. auto sales in April likely fell almost 2 percent from a year earlier, with consumer discounts remaining at levels high enough to threaten the industry’s long-term health, industry consultants J.D. Power and LMC Automotive said on Tuesday.

Akzo Nobel backs its chairman, still studying PPG offer

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – The chairman of Dutch paint-maker Akzo Nobel, Antony Burgmans, told shareholders at their annual meeting that the company is not yet ready to respond to a 26.9 billion takeover proposal by U.S. peer PPG Industries .

Eli Lilly’s profit beats on demand for new drugs

(Reuters) – Eli Lilly and Co reported a bigger-than-expected quarterly adjusted profit as sales of its newest products, including a diabetes injection, more than doubled.

Not an inside job: How two analysts became SEC whistleblowers

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Four years ago, two analysts who liked to swap notes on numbers they thought looked odd took a fateful step and tipped off U.S. regulators about a company that one of them had watched for months.

Lockheed Martin’s quarterly revenue up 6.6 percent

(Reuters) – Lockheed Martin Corp , whose F-35 fighter jet program has been under presidential spotlight for being too expensive, posted a 6.6 percent rise in quarterly sales, helped by strength in its aeronautics division that makes fighter jets.

Investors take another look at opinion polls after French vote

LONDON (Reuters) – Pollsters picked the two candidates to make it into next month’s French presidential election run-off, going some way to restoring their reputation in financial markets before other important votes across Europe.

DuPont profit beats on strong seed demand

(Reuters) – Chemicals and seeds producer DuPont , which is merging with Dow Chemical Co , reported a better-than-expected profit for the seventh straight quarter, helped by a rise in seed sales.

LVMH’s Arnault to take full control of Christian Dior

PARIS (Reuters) – French billionaire Bernard Arnault will combine the Christian Dior fashion brand with his LVMH luxury goods group as part of a 12 billion euro ($13 billion) move to simplify his business interests, a restructuring long demanded by other investors.

Gazprom CEO sees share of EU gas market rising despite LNG rivals

LONDON (Reuters) – A new pipeline from Russia’s Arctic fields to Germany will boost Moscow’s share of the European gas market despite competition from Qatar and the United States, and will also mean much less fuel goes via Ukraine, Russian gas monopoly Gazprom said.

Dutch Economic Affairs minister says still opposed to Akzo Nobel takeover

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Dutch Economic Affairs Minister Henk Kamp repeated his opposition to a takeover of paint maker Akzo Nobel on Tuesday, saying he did not care that U.S. rival PPG Industries had raised its offer.

Dutch court backs Swatch in row with Tiffany over venture

ZURICH (Reuters) – A Dutch appeals court ruled on Tuesday that Swatch Group deserves compensation in a row with U.S. luxury goods maker Tiffany over a failed watch venture.

World stocks rise on French vote relief, Trump tax plan talk

LONDON (Reuters) – World stocks hit record highs on Tuesday, with investors’ relief at centrist Emmanuel Macron’s victory in the first round of the French presidential election supported by speculation about U.S. tax reform.

Ghosn wants Mitsubishi to reform, rules out Nissan merger

BEKASI, Indonesia (Reuters) – A full merger of Japanese car makers Mitsubishi Motors Corp (MMC) and Nissan Motor Co Ltd is not on the table, Carlos Ghosn, chairman of both firms, said on Tuesday.

Waymo testing self-driving car ride service in Arizona

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Alphabet Inc’s Waymo autonomous vehicle group will begin testing a self-driving car program for hundreds of families in Phoenix, Arizona and is buying 500 Chrysler minivans to do so, the companies said on Tuesday.

Credit Suisse investors prepare to grill chairman Rohner over pay

ZURICH (Reuters) – Credit Suisse Chairman Urs Rohner faces his toughest shareholder meeting to date this week following an investor revolt over bonuses and losses totaling 5.65 billion Swiss francs ($5.7 billion) since 2015.

Toshiba to start taking bids in June for its Swiss unit Landis+Gyr: Kyodo

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s Toshiba Corp will start taking bids for Landis+Gyr, its Swiss smart meter unit, as early as June, Kyodo news agency reported on Tuesday.

East Coast refiners eye Texas oil as North Dakota alternative

NEW YORK (Reuters) – U.S. East Coast refiners are looking to buy increasing volumes of domestic crude oil from the Gulf Coast, two sources said, the latest twist in a trade flow upheaval in the wake of the opening of the Dakota Access pipeline.

Looming risks subdue Asia stock investors after stellar quarter

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Investors’ enthusiasm for Asian stocks is waning as a raft of political and economic risks takes the shine off the best first-quarter returns in 26 years.

Ahead of NAFTA talks, U.S. sets 20 percent duties on Canadian softwood lumber

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States will impose preliminary anti-subsidy duties averaging 20 percent on imports of Canadian softwood lumber, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said on Monday, escalating a long-running trade dispute between the two neighbors.

Oil edges up after six days of straight losses

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Oil prices inched up on Tuesday but markets remain under pressure following six consecutive sessions of declines as traders lose confidence that pledged output cuts by major producers will rein in oversupply in a world awash with fuel.

Ready for take-off? China’s answer to Boeing now just needs to sell

SHANGHAI/PARIS (Reuters) – When China unveiled an historic order for its first large commercial jetliner at a national air show in 2010, Western journalists were kept away, and only local media were allowed to witness a major turning point in China’s aviation ambitions.

Trump’s push to fund wall may be delayed as government shutdown looms

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump indicated an openness on Monday to delaying his push to secure funds for his promised border wall with Mexico, potentially eliminating a sticking point as lawmakers worked to avoid a looming shutdown of the federal government.

Tom Hanks jokes Twitter CEO inspired his character in ‘The Circle’

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Oscar-winning actor Tom Hanks, who plays a Silicon Valley tycoon in the new film “The Circle” about a powerful social media company, teased Twitter Inc Chief Executive Officer Jack Dorsey on Monday that he may have been inspiration for the part.

Labor shortage a stress test for Japan’s 24/7 convenience stores

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s growing labor shortage threatens the nation’s ubiquitous convenience stores, whose business model relies on an army of part-timers packing bento lunch boxes, manning cash registers and delivering goods 24/7.

T-Mobile open to merger talks, new subscribers top estimates

(Reuters) – T-Mobile US Inc is open to merger talks after a federal ban expires this week, the No. 3 U.S. wireless carrier said on Monday, as it reported stronger-than-expected subscriber growth in the first quarter.