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Singapore Exchange to launch new Indian derivatives before NSE deal ends

SINGAPORE, Feb 19 (Reuters) – Singapore Exchange Ltd (SGX) said on Monday it will launch successor products to its flagship Indian equity index derivatives before the bourse’s licence agreement with the National Stock Exchange of India (NSE) expires in August 2018. The move comes days after India’s three main bourses unexpectedly announced they would stop licensing their indexes to overseas exchanges, news which hit SGX’s shares as brokers cut the bourse’s earnings estimates. “Our successor products will provide certainty and…

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Australia shares rise on financials; NZ slips

* Investors focus on reporting season * Reporting companies among benchmark’s top gainers * Trade muted ahead of U.S. holiday By Aaron Saldanha Feb 19 (Reuters) – Australian shares traded higher on Monday as gains in the financial and industrial sectors overcame losses in energy stocks, with investors also focused on earnings reports. “With so much of the region just returning or still on Lunar New Year celebrations and the fact we have a U.S. holiday tonight, there is not…

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Global dividends hit record of $1.25 trillion in 2017, more to come

MILAN (Reuters) – Global dividends rose 7.7 percent to an all-time high of $1.25 trillion (1 trillion euros) last year boosted by a buoyant world economy and rising corporate confidence, Janus Henderson (JHG.N) said on Monday, predicting another record year ahead. The surge – the strongest since 2014 – was driven by increases in every region and almost every industry with record showings in 11 countries including the United States, Japan, Switzerland, Hong Kong, Taiwan and the Netherlands, the investment…

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Britain wants degree fees to reflect choice of subject

LONDON (Reuters) – Students at British universities could be charged variable tuition rates that reflect the economic value of their degrees, Minister for Education Damian Hinds said on Sunday, before the launch of a review of higher education funding. University tuition fees in England are high compared with elsewhere in Europe at around 9,000 pounds ($12,640) a year, and the opposition Labour Party gained support from students in last year’s election with a pledge to abolish fees in the future.…

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Australia shares set to slip; NZ falls slightly

Feb 19 (Reuters) – Australian shares are set to slip mildly at Monday’s open, extending a loss incurred on Friday. Australian share price index futures fell about 0.1 percent, or 7 points, to 5,850, a 54-point discount to the underlying S&P/ASX 200 index close. The benchmark lost 0.1 percent on Friday. Meanwhile, New Zealand’s benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index fell 0.1 percent in early trade, weighed on by materials and health care stocks. The biggest drag on the index was Fisher…

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In boost to reform, Saudi Arabia’s cabinet approves bankruptcy law

DUBAI/KHOBAR, Saudi Arabia (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia’s cabinet has approved a bankruptcy law, sources familiar with the matter said on Sunday, giving a boost to efforts to make the kingdom more enticing to investors. Modern bankruptcy legislation does not currently exist in Saudi Arabia, creating difficulties for struggling companies seeking to restructure debt with creditors since the 2009 global financial crisis and, more recently, the dip in oil prices. The kingdom is embarking on an intensive drive to overhaul its…

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UPDATE 3-Latvia central bank chief held by anti-corruption agency, urged to step aside

* Government does not say why central bank governor detained * Governor Rimsevics also sits on ECB Governing Council * Finance minister urges Rimsevics to step down pending inquiry (Adds background) By Gederts Gelzis RIGA, Feb 18 (Reuters) – Latvia’s anti-corruption agency has detained central bank Governor Ilmars Rimsevics, prompting calls for him to step aside while he is under investigation. Prime Minister Maris Kucinskis sought to reassure the nation that the economy and the financial system were stable. But…

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‘Black Panther’ Smashes Records With $218 Million at Holiday Weekend Box Office

LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) – Disney-Marvel’s “Black Panther” is heading for a super-heroic $218 million debut over the four-day President’s Day weekend at 4,020 North American locations, estimates showed Sunday. That number means that “Black Panther,” starring Chadwick Boseman and directed by Ryan Coogler, has doubled its original tracking in less than a month. The film, which carries an estimated $200 million production cost, had been tracking to bring in between an impressive $100 and $120 million when first estimates emerged…

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UPDATE 2-Latvia central bank head urged to step down during corruption inquiry

* Government does not say why central bank governor detained * Governor Rimsevics also sits on ECB Governing Council * Finance minister urges Rimsevics to step down while being investigated (Adds quotes, details) RIGA, Feb 18 (Reuters) – Latvia’s anti-corruption agency has detained central bank governor Ilmars Rimsevics, prompting calls for him to step aside while he is under investigation. In a statement to Reuters, Latvia’s Prime Minister Maris Kucinskis did not say why Rimsevics, a member of the European…

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Latvian finance minister says central bank chief should step down during investigation

RIGA, Feb 18 (Reuters) – Latvia’s central bank Governor Ilmars Rimsevics should step down while he is under investigation by the country’s anti-corruption agency, its finance minister said on Sunday. Prime Minister Maris Kucinskis said earlier on Sunday that Rimsevics, who is a member of the European Central Bank’s Governing Council, had been detained by the anti-corruption agency. “Given that the governor of the central bank is a symbol for every country, I think that it would be sensible at…

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