Look to energy names for global demand clues

Profit growth expectations for S&P 500 energy companies have fallen more than any other sector - from a forecast of 13.8 percent on July 1 to the current 1.8 percent, Thomson Reuters data showed. With various names due to report next week, including Exxon Mobil (XOM.N), Chevron (CVX.N), ConocoPhillips (COP.N) and National Oilwell Varco (NOV.N), there are hopes that executives will suggest that the fall in oil and share prices has overstated the outlook for these names. The energy sector over the last 20 weeks has spiraled from being the market leader to now ranking as its most distant laggard, according to a Relative Rotation Graph study, which analyzes the relative performance of the constituents of an index. The S&P energy sector up about 6 percent from Oct. 15, while the S&P 500 is up 5.5 percent from its Oct. 15 low and the benchmark index on Friday posted its best weekly gain since early January 2013.


Deutsche Bank lawyer found dead in apparent NY suicide: WSJ

Calogero Gambino, a senior Deutsche Bank (DBKGn.DE) regulatory lawyer, has been found dead in New York in what appears to have been a suicide, the Wall Street Journal reported on Saturday, citing New York City officials and other sources. Gambino, an associate general counsel and a managing director who worked for the German bank for 11 years, was found by his wife and pronounced dead by medical practitioners at the scene, according to the paper. He had been closely involved in negotiating legal issues for Deutsche Bank such as a probe by regulators of banks over allegations they manipulated the Libor benchmark interest rate as well as currency markets, the newspaper said. He was also an associate at a private law firm and a regulatory enforcement lawyer between 1997 and 1999, the Wall Street Journal said, citing Gambino's LinkedIn profile and conference biographies.


China's auto market growth may halve to 7 percent this year: industry body head

Growth in China's auto market, the world's biggest, will halve to 7 percent this year weighed down by a slowing economy, the head of an industry body said on Saturday. "Personally, I think growth this year can reach 7 percent," Dong Yang, secretary general of the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM), told reporters on the sidelines of an industry conference in Shanghai. The auto industry would reflect that but typically lags the economic cycle by a bit." CAAM had forecast China's auto market, which grew by 13.9 percent last year, to expand at 8.3 percent in 2014.


Areva-Siemens raises claim to $4.4 billion over Finnish reactor delays

The French-German consortium Areva-Siemens (AREVA.PA)(SIEGn.DE), the supplier of Finland's much-delayed Olkiluoto-3 nuclear reactor, has increased its claim against Finnish utility Teollisuuden Voima (TVO), TVO said late on Friday. TVO and Areva have traded accusations about who is to blame for delays and extra costs, and the International Chamber of Commerce's (ICC) arbitration court is processing a dispute on cost overruns between the two sides. Areva-Siemens in September said the start date of the reactor, which is planned to be Finland's fifth and biggest nuclear unit, will be pushed back to late 2018 - almost a decade later than originally planned.


India's finance minister favors interest rate cut: paper

India's Finance Minister Arun Jaitley favors a cut in interest rates to trigger demand in the construction sector, a newspaper report said on Saturday, but the central bank has signal it will not ease policy until it is confident of lower inflation. "Currently, interest rates are a disincentive. Now that inflation seems to be stabilizing somewhat, the time seems to have come to moderate the interest rates," Jaitley said in an interview with the Times of India. Last month, the Reserve Bank of India, sent a strong signal that it would refrain from cutting interest rates until the central bank was confident that consumer inflation can be cut to a target of 6 percent by January 2016.


Exclusive: Ford to overhaul Lincoln brand, this time with big bucks

Ford Motor Co's (F.N) new chief executive, Mark Fields, is giving the automaker's long-moribund Lincoln brand what his predecessor Alan Mulally never could: a little love and a lot of cash. Lincoln, a storied Detroit brand which Ford has owned since 1922, has been in a swoon for the past two decades, leaving dealers and customers wondering if Ford management had left the brand for dead. Now, with the renewed backing of Executive Chairman Bill Ford and the company's board, Fields has committed the automaker to a multiyear, multibillion-dollar overhaul of Lincoln that includes a significant investment in a new premium vehicle platform that will underpin several future Lincoln vehicles, four sources told Reuters. Ford could spend $5 billion or more over the next five years to revive Lincoln, revamp its product portfolio and reposition it as a true competitor to such global luxury leaders as Daimler AG's (DAIGn.DE) Mercedes-Benz and BMW AG (BMWG.DE), the sources said.


Fannie Mae settles shareholder lawsuit for $170 million

Fannie Mae has reached a $170 million settlement of a lawsuit accusing it of misleading shareholders about its finances, risk management and mortgage exposure before it was seized by the U.S. government ...


U.S. appeals court rules for GM over Spyker's Saab sale

Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati on Friday said Spyker failed to show GM intentionally interfered with the Dutch company's effort to sell Saab to Zhejiang Youngman Lotus Automobile Co, leading to Saab's bankruptcy. GM had sold a majority of Saab to Spyker in 2010.


Ex-Bank of New York Mellon employee pleads guilty to insider trading

A former Bank of New York Mellon Corp (BK.N) employee on Friday pleaded guilty to insider trading based on tips from a former Merck & Co Inc (MRK.N) employee about potential pharmaceutical mergers. Federal prosecutors in New York said David Post, 41, a product manager at the bank, received nonpublic information from a former Rutgers Business School classmate about three companies: Idenix Pharmaceuticals, Ardea BioSciences and ViroPharma Inc [VIRO.UL].


Port squeeze threatens US retailers' holiday stocking plans

The delays are affecting retailers including JC Penney Co (JCP.N), Macy's Inc (M.N), Kohl's Corp (KSS.N) Nordstrom Inc (JWN.N), American Eagle (AEO.N), Ralph Lauren (RL.N) and Carter's (CRI.N), according to three people with direct knowledge of the situation. Retail giant Wal-mart Stores Inc (WMT.N), recently diverted 300 shipment containers to Oakland to avoid the congestion, one person said. Wal-Mart declined comment. The problem stems from a shortage of trucking equipment, called chassis, but the National Retail Federation in a statement said protracted labor negotiations were an issue, too.

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