REFILE-PRESS DIGEST - Wall Street Journal - March 4

Mon Mar 4, 2013 1:51am EST

March 4 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories in the Wall Street Journal. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

* Google Inc won a key victory in Europe as German lawmakers approved a watered-down copyright bill that would protect the Internet search giant from having to pay fees for displaying links to news articles.

* On Monday, one of the most prestigious banks in Switzerland, Wegelin & Co, is expected to become the first foreign bank to be criminally sentenced in the U.S. for tax violations, according to court documents.

* U.S. Democrats on Capitol Hill are pressing regulators for more details on what led to a $9.3 billion foreclosure settlement after a report last week showed error rates by several large banks were higher than the figures released in January by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.

* United Technologies Corp's Pratt & Whitney unit disclosed it has broken up an alleged fraudulent-testing scheme by a sister United Technologies unit, affecting tens of thousands of engine parts used on popular business jets and turboprop aircraft flown by airlines around the world.

* Haruhiko Kuroda, the Japanese government's pick for the next Bank of Japan governor said he would do "everything possible" to beat deflation, in a stark turnaround from his predecessors that signals the bank may be headed for a big, new wave of monetary easing.

* Portugal is seeking to renegotiate parts of its international bailout agreement amid worse-than-expected forecasts for an economy in recession and growing popular protest over deficit-cutting austerity measures imposed by its lenders.

* Greece kicked off fresh talks Sunday with international creditors on securing the country's next aid tranche. The talks come amid hopes that Athens has been keeping pace with its reform efforts and may receive a rare passing grade from a troika of budget inspectors.

* SLM Corp, the largest U.S. student lender, last week sold $1.1 billion of securities backed by private student loans. Demand for the riskiest bunch - those that will lose money first if the loans go bad - was 15 times greater than the supply, people familiar with the deal said.

* U.S. sales of new cars and trucks rose 3.7 percent to 1.2 million last month, a slower pace than a year earlier but healthy enough to lift General Motors Co, Ford Motor Co and Chrysler Group LLC to single-digit percentage gains over a year earlier.

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