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TOP STORIES

ECB readies package of rate cuts and targeted measures

FRANKFURT - The European Central Bank is preparing a package of policy options for its June meeting, including cuts in all its interest rates and targeted measures aimed at boosting lending to small- and mid-sized firms. (ECB/POLICY (EXCLUSIVE UPDATE 2), expect by 1300 GMT/9 AM ET, by Andreas Framke, Paul Carrel and John O'Donnell, 1,000 words)

+ See also:

- ECB/MERSCH (UPDATE 1), moved, by Annika Breidthardt, 575 words

- EU-ELECTION/JUNCKER, moved, 175 words

Bank of England says no rush to up rates as recovery builds

LONDON - The Bank of England pushes back against expectations it might raise interest rates in less than a year's time, saying that Britain's economic recovery is still in its early stages. (BRITAIN-ECONOMY/BOE (UPDATE 2), moved, by David Milliken and Ana Nicolaci da Costa, 725 words)

+ See also:

- BRITAIN JOBS/, moved, 630 words

Pfizer pledges to ringfence key drugs in AstraZeneca deal

LONDON - Pfizer says it will ringfence the development of important drugs if it acquires AstraZeneca, rejecting a charge from the British company that a takeover will disrupt important research and put lives at risk. (ASTRAZENECA-PFIZER/ (UPDATE 2), moved, by Ben Hirschler and Paul Sandle, 670 words)

+ See also:

- ASTRAZENECA-PFIZER/J&J, moved, by Ben Hirschler, 700 words

Chinese police charge former GSK China head with bribery

BEIJING/SHANGHAI - Chinese police say they have charged the British former China head of drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline and other colleagues with corruption, after a probe found the firm made billions of yuan from elaborate schemes to bribe doctors and hospitals. (CHINA-GLAXOSMITHKLINE/ (UPDATE 3, PICTURE), moved, by Megha Rajagopalan and Kazunori Takada, 1,155 words)

+ See also:

- CHINAGLAXOSMITHKLINE/STATEMENT, moved, 150 words

MARKETS & INVESTMENT

BoE, ECB outlooks tweaked; sterling, yields fall

LONDON - Sterling and top-rated government bond yields fall after the Bank of England says it is in no rush to raise interest rates, cooling market expectations that the first rate hike from a major central bank could come later this year. (GLOBAL MARKETS/ (WRAPUP 5), moved, by Jamie McGeever, 750 words)

US regulators scrutinize financial risk-modelling firms

WASHINGTON - U.S. government officials recently proposed creating scorecards to measure the potential threat posed by firms that offer risk models, amid concerns that large financial institutions may be too dependent on the same products, according to documents reviewed by Reuters. (FINANCIAL-REGULATIONS/RISKMODELING (EXCLUSIVE), moved, by Sarah N. Lynch, 1,215 word)

INSIGHT

Cisco's audits raised red flags about Russian resellers

NEW YORK/WASHINGTON - In a series of audits in 2009, Cisco Systems found that much of the business between resellers of its products and a Russian state-owned telecommunications company, Svyazinvest, could not be verified because it was either "misrepresented" or documents were withheld by the resellers, according to an executive summary of the audits reviewed by Reuters. (CISCO SYSTEMS-RUSSIA (INSIGHT, UPDATE 1), moved, by Marina Lopes and Aruna Viswanatha, 1,440 words)

ECONOMY

Euro zone industry output unexpectedly falls in March

BRUSSELS - Euro zone industrial output unexpectedly falls in March on the year for the first time since August as energy production slumps, data shows, in what could point to slower economic growth going into the second quarter. (EUROZONE-ECONOMY/INDUSTRIALOUTPUT (UPDATE 1), moved, by Martin Santa, 450 words)

U.S. producer prices record largest gain in 1-1/2 years

WASHINGTON - U.S. producer prices post their largest increase in 1-1/2 years in April as the cost of food and trade services surge, hinting at some inflation pressures at the factory gate. (USA-ECONOMY/INFLATION, moved, 350 words)

EBRD halves growth forecasts, warns of Russian recession

WARSAW - The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development slashes its regional growth forecasts in half and warns of damage to the world economy if the crisis in Ukraine sends Russia into recession. (EBRD-FORECASTS/ (UPDATE 1), moved, by Marc Jones and Karolina Slowikowska, 600 words)

Norway cuts 2014 growth forecast, lifts inflation

OSLO - Norway cut its 2014 growth forecast and says it will spend more of its oil revenues to guide the economy through a rough patch, exacerbated by slowing oil investments and weak consumption. (NORWAY-BUDGET/ (UPDATE 1), moved, 365 words)

COMPANIES

Pimco outflows dent Allianz asset management earnings

FRANKFURT - German insurer Allianz sees operating profit in its asset management arm slump by more than one fourth in the first quarter as its California-based Pimco unit suffers 21.7 billion euros ($29.7 billion) in investment outflows. (ALLIANZ-RESULTS/ (UPDATE 2), moved, by Jonathan Gould, 500 words)

Renault-Nissan's Russian resilience has limits

PARIS/MOSCOW - Renault and alliance partner Nissan show every sign of riding out the Russian diplomatic crisis over Ukraine, but analysts say any toughening of sanctions could hurt them more than rivals. (RENAULT SA-NISSAN MOTOR/RUSSIA (ANALYSIS), moving shortly, by Laurence Frost and Megan Davies, 900 words)

Sony vows deeper restructuring, warns of another loss

TOKYO - Sony Corp says it will step up a broad restructuring this year to tackle bloated costs and exit some unprofitable businesses, hoping to put behind it years of persistent losses. (SONY-RESULTS/ (UPDATE 2, PICTURE), moved, by Reiji Murai and Sophie Knight, 610 words)

ICAP's profits fall 4 pct, seeks to recover from Libor

LONDON - British interdealer broker ICAP says it is recovering from 2013's Libor rate-rigging scandal, but is still grappling with deleveraging by banks and shifts in the regulatory environment. (ICAP-RESULTS/ (UPDATE 2), moved, By Freya Berry, 425 words)

+ See also:

- JULIUS BAER/ (UPDATE 1), moved, 370 words

"Stay strong," union president tells S.Africa strikers

MARIKANA, South Africa - The president of South Africa's striking AMCU union urges its members to remain strong in the face of efforts by the world's top platinum firms to woo miners to end a 16-week stoppage, the longest and costliest ever to hit the sector. (SAFRICA-STRIKE/ (UPDATE 3, PICTURE, TV), moved, by Zandi Shabalala, 430 words)

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