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TOP STORIES

U.S. Q3 growth raised on strong inventory building

WASHINGTON - The U.S. economy grew faster than initially thought in the third quarter, but the momentum is unlikely to be sustained as the nation braces for deep cuts in government spending and tax increases early next year. (USA-ECONOMY/ (WRAPUP 1), expect by 1400 GMT/9 ET, by Lucia Mutikania, 450 words)

+ See also:

- USA-ECONOMY/JOBLESS, moved, 350 words

- USA-RETAIL/CHAINSTORES (WRAPUP 2), expect by 1400 GMT/9 AM ET, by Jessica Wohl, 500 words

Obama fiscal cliff negotiators headed to Capitol Hill

WASHINGTON - Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner meets Republicans and Democrats in Washington for talks to resolve the fiscal cliff with few signs of significant movement on either side of the dispute that continues to rattle global markets. (USA-FISCAL/GEITHNER, moved, by Fred Barbash 500 words)

U.S. budget deal hopes lift shares and commodities

LONDON - World equities hit a three-week high and commodities gain as optimism grew that U.S. political leaders will eventually reach a deal to avoid a fiscal crisis which threatens to derail growth in the world's biggest economy. (MARKETS-GLOBAL/ (WRAPUP 6), moved, by Marc Jones, 750 words)

German right won't snub Merkel in Greek vote - ally

BERLIN - Angela Merkel will not need votes from opponents on the left to get a bailout for Greece through the German parliament, a senior ally says , despite a growing revolt within the chancellor's conservative coalition. (EUROZONE-GREECE/GERMANY, moved, by Madeline Chambers, 650 words)

ECONOMY

BoE warns UK banks may lack enough capital

LONDON - The Bank of England steps up pressure on commercial banks to shore up their capital, days after the government chose a leader of the global push for tighter banking regulation to head the central bank. (BRITAIN-BOE/FPC (UPDATE 1), moved, by David Milliken and Alessandra Prentice, 500 words)

Italy 10-year borrowing costs hit two-year low

MILAN - Italy's 10-year bond yield hits its lowest in two years at an auction, buoyed by a deal this week on Greek debt which has eased near-term risks for the governments under fire in the euro zone's debt crisis. (ITALY-DEBT/ (UPDATE 1), moved, 500 words)

German unemployment rises for eighth month running

BERLIN - German unemployment rises for the eighth straight month in November, suggesting domestic demand might not be able to compensate for weakening exports and power growth in Europe's largest economy. (GERMANY-UNEMPLOYMENT/ (UPDATE 1), moved, by Sarah Marsh, 460 words)

EU agrees to launch free trade negotiations with Japan

BRUSSELS - EU trade ministers agree to start negotiations towards a free-trade agreement with Japan, overcoming resistance from European carmakers who say a deal will damage their industry and cause massive job losses. (EU-JAPAN/TRADE (UPDATE 2) expect by 1600 GMT/1100 ET, by Robin Emmott, 600 words)

France's love affair with nuclear cools

PARIS - For decades, the elite engineers turned out by Paris's grand Corps des Mines academy were faithful followers of the pro-atomic creed that transformed their country into the most nuclear-reliant nation in the world. (FRANCE-NUCLEAR/ (INSIGHT), moved, by Muriel Boselli, 1,000 words)

MARKETS

Short sellers target hard hit Europe tech stocks

PARIS - Hedge funds are increasingly betting against European tech shares, targeting companies hit hard by a sluggish global economic outlook and the ones struggling with stiff competition in the mobile business. (MARKETS-EUROPE-STOCKS/ TECHS, moved, by Blaise Robinson, 800 words)

Weaker yen stirs interest in dormant carry trades

LONDON - Expectations of easier monetary policy in Japan, along with a weaker yen, have revived talk of yen-funded carry trades, with investments in some emerging market currencies seen as most attractive. (MARKETS-FOREX/CARRY, moved, by Anooja Debnath, 740 words)

+ See also:

- JAPAN-ECONOMY/BOJ (UPDATE 2), moved, by Leika Kihara, 650 words

Foreigners are biggest losers in China's stocks "casino"

SHANGHAI - Overseas investors betting on China-traded stocks have generally fared worse than local Chinese players over the past five years, according to Thomson Reuters data, underscoring the challenges foreigners face in a market that some say resembles a casino. (MARKETS-CHINA/QFII (PIX), moved, by Samuel Shen and Kazunori Takada, 1,000 words)

COMPANIES

Siemens says Invensys Rail deal will boost profits

FRANKFURT/LONDON - Germany's Siemens AG promises investors its deal to buy Invensys' rail business for a hefty 1.74 billion pounds ($2.78 billion) will contribute to boosting profits in a tough economy.(INVENSYS-SIEMENS/ (UPDATE 1), moved, by Maria Sheahan and Rhys Jones, 500 words)

Prosecutors raid German UniCredit unit in tax probe

FRANKFURT - State prosecutors raid the Munich offices of UniCredit SpA's German unit HVB as part of a tax evasion probe relating to share deals several years ago, HVB said. (UNICREDIT-PROBE/(UPDATE 2) moved, by Edward Taylor 450 words)

Tiffany cuts sales, profit forecast, shares tumble

Tiffany & Co lowers its fiscal-year sales and profit forecast for the third straight quarter and reports lower-than-expected revenue and earnings, hit by a drop in same-store sales in Asia and disappointing sales of silver jewellery. (TIFFANY-RESULTS/ (UPDATE 2), expect by 1330 GMT/8.30 ET, by Phil Wahba, 500 words)

Investors brace for possible Deutsche Telekom dividend cut

FRANKFURT - Investors are bracing for news that Deutsche Telekom will likely join the long list of telecoms companies which will cut their dividend, suffering from shrinking markets and heavy investments in faster networks. 600 words.(DEUTSCHETELEKOM-DIVIDEND/, expect by 1400 GMT/9 AM ET, by Harro Ten Wolde and Peter Maushagen 500 words)

Rio Tinto to slash costs, boost asset sales

MELBOURNE/SYDNEY - Rio Tinto aims to axe $7 billion in costs over the next two years and sell more assets to cushion against weaker commodity prices, while at the same time beefing up output in its lucrative iron ore business. (RIOTINTO-OUTLOOK/ (UPDATE 3, PIX), moved, by Sonali Paul and James Regan, 1,000 words)

+ See also:

- AUSTRALIA-BHP/SUCCESSION (UPDATE 1), moved, by Jim Regan, 900 words

- INDIA-IRONORE/EXPORTS, moved, by Manolo Serapio Jr and Siddesh Mayenkar, 1,250 words

Mitsubishi Heavy, Hitachi to combine power system ops

TOKYO - Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Hitachi Ltd are to combine their fossil-fuel power generation businesses to compete against bigger overseas rivals Siemens and General Electric Co, which are winning deals even in the Japanese firms' own backyard. (HITACHI MITSUBISHIHEAVY/POWER, moved, by Mari Saito, 600 words)

+ See also:

- BANKOFAYUDHYA-STAKE/ (UPDATE 2), moved, by Taiga Uranaka and Saeed Azhar, 650 words

Going global: India's Mahindra races for Aston Martin

MUMBAI - Sports car maker Aston Martin may look like a shiny trophy that makes an awkward fit for Mahindra and Mahindra, the world's biggest tractor maker, but it would help the Indian group realise a long-standing ambition to be a global player. (ASTONMARTIN-MAHINDRA/, moved, by Sumeet Chatterjee and Tony Munroe, 1,050 words)

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