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Iran condemns IEA decision to release oil stocks

TEHRAN (Reuters)- Iran condemned on Saturday a decision by oil consumer nations to release strategic crude stocks as politically motivated interference in the market that would not have a sustained impact on prices. “The measure by the International Energy Agency in consuming their oil stockpile is meddling in the natural…

UN warns of new Asia drug surge

UNITED NATIONS — A plant disease devastated Afghan opium production last year but Myanmar is seeing a worrying drug boom, the UN anti-narcotics agency warned Thursday. With the cocaine market in decline, Peru is now on a par with Colombia as the world’s top coca producer, but the UN Office…

Ethanol subsidy caused corn price surge

WASHINGTON — US ethanol subsidies pushed up corn prices as much as 17 percent in 2011, according to a study released Wednesday at a time when Washington’s policies on biofuels are coming under heightened scrutiny. The study by Bruce Babcock of Iowa State University and released by the Geneva-based International…

Stock futures up on optimism over Greek vote

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Stock index futures rose on Tuesday as expectations grew that a solution will be found for Greece to avoid a default and a short-term contagion risk to other euro zone countries could be contained. Euro zone finance ministers said the Greek government had until July 3 to approve new steps to…

Supreme Court allows suit against Bayer

WASHINGTON — The US Supreme Court on Thursday allowed a class-action suit by alleged victims of the anti-cholesterol drug Baycol, which was taken off the market in 2001 by German pharmaceuticals giant Bayer. The US top court said in a unanimous decision that states were not allowed to ban any…

Miracle-Gro hopes to expand into medical marijuana market

As growth slows, the Scotts Miracle-Gro Company is looking to the expanding medical marijuana industry as a new source of revenue. Scotts’ Chief Executive Jim Hagedorn told the Wall Street Journal that he is exploring medical marijuana and other niche markets to help boost sales. The company currently relies on…

Bernanke sees ‘loss of momentum’ in jobs market

WASHINGTON (AFP) – After a slew of wretched economic news, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has warned there had been a “loss of momentum” in the already tepid US jobs market. Two years into a slow and largely jobless recovery, Bernanke predicted employment and growth would eventually pick up, but…

Divided OPEC begins critical oil output meeting

VIENNA (AFP) – OPEC began a tense output meeting here on Wednesday amid uncertainty over the outcome, with clear divisions over whether the cartel should boost production to help revive flagging growth. The grouping of 12 member nations pumping 40 percent of global oil supplies, faces a crucial decision on…

Singapore to overtake Vegas this year: US gaming head

MACAU (AFP) – Singapore is set to overtake Las Vegas as the world’s second-largest gambling hub this year, a US gaming industry head said Tuesday, as Asia cements its place as a major betting market. Singapore has emerged as Asia’s hottest new gambling destination with a revamped cityscape and billions…

Oil prices fall amid rumors of increased output

NEW YORK – Oil prices fell Monday amid worries about a faltering global economic recovery and speculation that the OPEC may raise supply. New York’s main contract, WTI light sweet crude for delivery in July, finished the trading session at $99.01 a barrel, a loss of $1.21 from Friday’s closing…

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