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IATA Expects Airline Profits to Hit $18 bn in 2014

The International Air Transport Association said on Monday that it expects airline companies to record combined net profits of $18 billion this year.

Revenues were forecast to reach $746 billion, IATA director general Tony Tyler said in Doha, pointing out that net margins stood to average 2.4 percent only. 

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Russia Pushes Back Ukraine Gas Cut Ultimatum

Crisis-hit Ukraine won a vital reprieve from Russia on Monday when Moscow pushed back a possible cut in gas shipments, which would also impact parts of Europe, until next week.

Russia's surprise decision came hours before the two sides were to lock horns in Brussels over a price dispute that emerged when Moscow cancelled the discounts it awarded the pro-Kremlin regime which was ousted in February street protests.

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Money Talks: Economists Call Spain-Germany World Cup Final

If you want to predict goals, follow the money, say German economists who have used footballers' value to predict a Spain-Germany World Cup final.

Researchers from the DIW Institute in Berlin based their model on the market value of each team, using the transfer fees of the players. 

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Euro Up on Dollar ahead of Crucial ECB Meeting

The euro rebounded from three-month lows against the dollar Friday but remained relatively weak ahead of next week's key meeting of the European Central Bank.

The euro pushed to $1.3630 from the $1.36 line Thursday, but still remained far below its recent peak over $1.39.

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Merger Activity Helps Push U.S. Stocks Higher

Fresh merger and acquisition activity helped lift U.S. stocks higher in a holiday-shortened week that was otherwise light on trading catalysts.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 110.90 points (0.67 percent) for the week to 16,717.17, setting a fresh record on Friday.

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China Signals Policy Easing as Economy Falters

China has signaled it will further ease monetary policy to kick-start the world's second largest economy by cutting the amount of funds that some banks must hold in reserve, according to a government statement.

The State Council, China's cabinet, announced after a meeting on Friday that it would trim reserve requirements for banks which lend to the agricultural sector and small enterprises, said the statement posted on the central government website.

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Survey: China House Prices Post First Fall in 23 Months

Home prices in major Chinese cities posted their first monthly decline in nearly two years in May, an independent survey showed Saturday, providing new evidence the once red-hot market is losing steam.

The average price of a new home in 100 major cities declined this month by 0.32 percent from April to 10,978 yuan ($1,758) per square metre, according to the China Index Academy (CIA), the first fall since June 2012.

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U.S. Commerce Chief: Time to Start New U.S.-Cuba Ties

The head of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce made an urgent plea Thursday to relaunch relations between Cuba and the United States.

Thomas Donohue spoke at the end of the highest-profile visit of an American official to the communist-ruled island in years.

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Facebook's Zuckerberg Pumping $120 mln into Local Schools

Facebook billionaire Mark Zuckerberg put out word late Thursday that he and his wife Priscilla Chan are pumping $120 million into San Francisco Bay Area schools.

Distribution of the money will be spread over five years, with initial grants going toward initiatives for providing computers and Internet access in public schools as well as training teachers and enlisting parents in efforts to keep students on track.

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Apple's Beats Buy is Two-Sided for Music Streaming

Apple's $3 billion purchase of headphone maker and streaming music company Beats Electronics sheds light on a rarely recognized reality in the music-streaming industry: It's hard to succeed in the business without offering other products and services.

Streaming-music companies like Beats Music, which charge users up to $10 a month, can sometimes pay as much as 70 percent of their revenue in artist royalty fees. That leaves little left for advertising and promotional campaigns to explain to consumers the benefits of paying for a music service.

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