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ABN Amro Eyes Record-Breaking Return to Dutch Bourse

Seven years after being nationalized in a 2008 bailout, ABN Amro bounces back onto the stock market Friday in what is being billed as one of the biggest IPOs by a European lender since the financial crisis.

ABN Amro said it would offer 20 percent of its capital to investors in a first tranche.

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U.S. Bank Issues First Debit Cards for Use in Cuba

A U.S. bank announced Thursday it has begun offering its American clients debit cards they can use in Cuba for the first since the two Cold War foes moved to normalize relations nearly a year ago.

Florida-based Stonegate bank said its U.S. clients can use the Mastercard debit card at hotels, restaurants and other businesses on the communist-ruled island.

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UK Budget Cuts Raise Terror Attack Risk, ex-Security Chief Warns

Britain will be more vulnerable to the kind of attacks launched by the Islamic State group in Paris if planned police budget cuts go ahead, the country's former counter-terrorism chief warned on Thursday.

Finance minister George Osborne is set to announce departmental budget cuts in a spending review next week, and the interior ministry, which oversees policing, is in line for what are expected to be sizable reductions.

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Report: Purchasing Power in Syria Drops 80 Percent since War

Residents of war-torn Syria have seen their purchasing power drop by an estimated 80 percent since the beginning of the country's conflict in 2011, the Al-Watan daily said on Thursday. 

Jamal al-Satal, head of Syria's Consumer Protection Society, told the paper that "individual purchasing power has dropped hugely," estimating it had decreased "by 80 percent since the beginning of 2011." 

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Saudi Says Oil Price Slump Should not Stop Investment

Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi called for sustained investment in new output capacity Thursday despite the slump in world prices.

Naimi said global production lost four million barrels per day due to natural depreciation and predicted an increase in demand of one million bpd.

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Bank of Japan Holds Fire on Stimulus Despite Recession

Japan's central bank on Thursday held fire on expanding its monetary easing program, even as the world's third-largest economy slipped into its second recession in two years and monthly exports fell.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has been trying since late 2012 to revitalise Japan's economy through his signature "Abenomics" policies, with aggressive monetary easing by the Bank of Japan (BoJ) at its foundation.

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Oil Prices up on France IS Strikes, U.S. Stockpiles Data

Oil prices rose in Asian trade Thursday as Europe struck back against the Islamic State (IS) group after the Paris attacks and U.S. crude stockpiles registered a mild rise, analysts said.

The Federal Reserve's broadly upbeat summary of the U.S. economy also lifted confidence, with most markets in Asia advancing after a rally on Wall Street.

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Saudi Firm Injects 49 Million Euros into Euro Disney

A firm owned by a Saudi prince said Wednesday it has injected 49.2 million euros ($52.37 million) into the struggling Euro Disney theme park operator under a recapitalization plan.

Riyadh-based Kingdom Holding Co, 95 percent owned by the billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, confirmed its "additional investment in Euro Disney... whereby KHC fully participated in the rights issue" offered by the company which operates Disneyland Paris.

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Dutch Told to Cut Gas Production in EU's Biggest Field

A top Dutch advisory body Wednesday ordered the Netherlands to review extraction of natural gas from the EU's biggest gas field and cut production after a series of minor earthquakes.

The Council of State said it was cancelling decisions cutting production taken in January and June by the Economic Minister Henk Kamp, and ordering him back to the drawing board.

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Greek Farmers Protest against Tax Hikes in Bailout Deal

Thousands of Greek farmers on Wednesday protested in Athens against tax hikes planned under the country's latest economic bailout.

Police said 4,000 farmers had gathered on the central Syntagma Square.

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