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Oil Heads to $103 as UN Authorizes Libya Strikes

Oil prices rose to near $103 a barrel Friday in Asia as traders worried the United Nations' authorization of military strikes against forces loyal to Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi could prolong the conflict and threaten oil exports.

Benchmark crude for April delivery was up $1.53 at $102.95 a barrel at late afternoon Singapore time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract added $3.44 to settle at $101.42 on Thursday.

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Why Inflation Hurts More Than it Did 30 Years Ago

Inflation spooked the nation in the early 1980s. It surged and kept rising until it topped 13 percent.

These days, inflation is much lower. Yet to many Americans, it feels worse now. And for a good reason: Their income has been even flatter than inflation.

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Lufthansa Sees Higher Profit, Sales in 2011-12

The leading German airline, Lufthansa, forecast Thursday improved operating profit and sales for this year and next even though 2011 "will not be a walk in the park."

For 2010, the Lufthansa group reported an operating profit of 876 million euros ($1.2 billion) on sales that reached 27.3 billion.

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Toyota to Partially Resume Production in 7 Plants

Toyota said it would resume partial production of car parts at seven plants in Japan on Thursday, after suspending all factories following the nation's biggest ever earthquake.

The plants will first begin making replacement parts for the domestic market, and on Monday restart production of parts to supply to its overseas factories.

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Japan Market Bounces Back, Lifts World Shares

Japanese stocks rebounded Wednesday, recovering some of the massive losses sustained over the last two days following a devastating earthquake and tsunami. Markets around the world also bounced back even as the human and economic toll from the disasters, including an escalating nuclear crisis, remained unclear.

Oil prices rose above $98 a barrel as fears that clashes in Bahrain and Libya could further disrupt crude supplies outweighed concern Japan's crises will crimp demand. In currencies, the dollar was little against the yen and up against the euro.

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Oil Rises Above $98 Amid Bahrain, Libya Clashes

Oil prices rose to above $98 a barrel Wednesday in Asia as fears that clashes in Bahrain and Libya could further disrupt crude supplies outweighed concern Japan's disaster will crimp demand.

Benchmark crude for April delivery was up 97 cents at $98.15 a barrel at late afternoon Singapore time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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Japan Quake, Tsunami Could Hit Global Production

The economic aftershocks from the massive earthquake off the coast of Japan, the resulting tsunami and a feared nuclear meltdown could hit global production of everything from aircraft to iPads.

Panic selling sent Tokyo shares down 10.55 percent on worries the nuclear crisis would become a catastrophe Tuesday, after radiation levels near a quake-stricken nuclear plant surged following explosions and a fire.

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Nuclear Crisis Slams Stocks in Japan, Around World

Japan's Nikkei stock index nose-dived nearly 11 percent Tuesday as the earthquake-shattered country faced an unfolding nuclear crisis after a radiation leak was detected at a crippled power plant and residents were warned to stay indoors. Panic-selling sent shares lower across the globe.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 stock average sank a staggering 10.6 percent — more than 1,000 points — to close at 8,605.15 after hitting a midday low of 8,227.63 points, more than 14 percent down. The broader Topix, meanwhile, lost 8 percent. Oil prices fell below $100 a barrel, and Asian shares tanked amid fears that Japan's nuclear emergency would worsen.

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Qatar Holding to Buy 6.16 Percent of Iberdrola

Spanish power group Iberdrola Monday announced investment fund Qatar Holding will take a 6.16 percent stake in its share capital.

Iberdrola's capital will increase by 253.76 million Euros ($353.49 million) which "will allow the subscription by Qatar Holding of a participation" of 5.81 percent by buying Iberdrola's shares for 5.633 Euros percent each, below the price of 5.961 Euros at Friday's close.

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Bidders Say Kuwait's Zain OK'd Bid for Saudi Unit

Kuwaiti telecommunications firm Zain has tentatively accepted a $950 million bid for its Saudi operations, the division's joint suitors said Monday in a deal that could lead to further consolidation for the Mideast's mobile service providers.

Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal's Kingdom Holding Co. said in a regulatory filing that it and bid partner Batelco Group of Bahrain received "preliminary acceptance" for their non-binding offer from Zain's board. Completing the deal is expected to take weeks.

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