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S&P Upgrades Outlook for Spain Debt Rating

Global rating agency Standard & Poor's upgraded its outlook for Spain's debt on Friday, highlighting the prospects for export-led growth in the eurozone's fourth-largest economy.

The New York-based agency kept Spain's long-term credit rating at "BBB minus", just a notch above junk bond status, but raised the outlook to "stable" from "negative".

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Oil Flat in Asian Trade Amid U.S. Oversupply Concerns

Oil prices were flat in Asian trade Friday after the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States, with investors increasingly concerned over growing U.S. crude stockpiles, analysts said.

New York's main contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for January delivery, was down eight cents at $92.22 in afternoon trade while Brent North Sea crude for January eased one cent to $110.85.

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U.N. Begins Distributing Fuel to Combat Gaza Crisis

The United Nations on Thursday began distributing fuel in Gaza to keep critical infrastructure running as fears of a health crisis grow over accumulating rubbish and sewage, an official said.

"Fuel is actually coming in, as of today, through the Kerem Shalom (goods crossing with Israel), purchased by UNRWA and distributed by the U.N.," U.N. Middle East special coordinator Robert Serry told a news conference in northern Gaza.

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Analysts: German Jobs Miracle Could be Running out of Steam

Germany's unemployment rate was steady in November, but the country's much lauded "jobs miracle" could be running out of steam, analysts said Thursday.

While Germany's jobless rate -- the proportion of people out of work compared with the working population as a whole -- was unchanged in both unadjusted and seasonally-adjusted terms in November, the actual jobless totals increased, according to data published by the Federal Labor Office.

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Philippine Economy Expands 7 Percent in 3Q

The Philippine economy expanded 7 percent in the third quarter, but growth is expected to slow because of devastation from the super typhoon that hit eastern and central regions earlier this month.

Statistics agency chief Jose Ramon Albert said Thursday that growth in the latest quarter was driven by services and industry.

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Venezuelan Leader Announces New Economic Measures

Venezuela's leftist President Nicolas Maduro announced Wednesday he will unveil a second package of economic measures under an emergency decree to counter what he calls an economic war by the business sector.

He said the measures to be announced Friday will regulate imports, on which the oil-rich nation is highly dependent for basic goods.

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Fireworks at World's Tallest Tower as Dubai Wins Expo 2020

Dubai beat off opposition from Brazil, Russia and Turkey on Wednesday to win the right to host the 2020 World Expo, sparking celebrations in the Gulf city and a stunning fireworks display at the world's tallest building.

City authorities declared Thursday a school holiday to celebrate the victory.

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Iran, U.S. to Open Joint Chamber of Commerce

Iran and the United States are to establish a joint chamber of commerce within a month, with direct flights also planned, an Iranian official said Wednesday in a newspaper report.

"Iran-U.S. chamber of commerce will be launched in less than one month," Abolfazl Hejazi, a member of Iran's Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture, told the English-language Iran Daily.

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Dubai to Host World Expo 2020

Dubai on Wednesday beat off opposition from Brazil, Russia and Turkey to win the right to host the 2020 World Expo.

The Gulf city beat Russia's Ekaterinberg in the final round of voting to clinch a prestigious event that is credited with delivering a huge boost to tourism and business in the host city.

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Thailand Cuts Interest Rate Amid Political Strife

Thailand's central bank unexpectedly lowered the cost of credit Wednesday as escalating protests to topple the government add to pressure on the economy.

The Bank of Thailand said it lowered its policy interest rate by a quarter percentage point to 2.25 percent, hoping to stimulate lending and investment.

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