GLOBAL MARKETS-Asian shares, dollar up on Fed's optimism; earnings in focus

* Earnings likely to disappoint, with Chinese companies in focus

UPDATE 1-China's Baidu to buy back $1 bln shares after investor selldown

BEIJING, July 30 - Baidu Inc, China's biggest internet search engine company, said on Thursday it will buy back shares worth $1 billion after the company's stock price slid following a weak earnings report earlier this week.

RPT-Hay for cheese? Barter booms in cash-squeezed rural Greece

LAMIA, Greece, July 28 - Wild boar and power cuts were Greek cotton farmer Mimis Tsakanikas' biggest worries until a bank shutdown last month left him stranded without cash to pay suppliers, and his customers without money to pay him.

Markets, Financials 1:16am EDT

Middle East funds turn negative as oil drops again

* Bears outweigh bulls for both equities and fixed income * Oil prices back at early February levels * Saudi Arabia seen as most expensive market in region * UAE attracts bets linked to Iran * Egypt, a cheaply valued oil importer, also favoured By Olzhas Auyezov DUBAI, July 30 - Middle East fund managers have on balance turned negative towards the region and especially its biggest equity market, Saudi Arabia, after oil prices gave up most of the gains made in t

Stocks, Markets 1:00am EDT

Mexico central bank expected to hold rates, hint at Sept hike

MEXICO CITY, July 30 - Mexico's central bank is expected to hold borrowing costs steady on Thursday but signal that it is ready to follow the U.S. Federal Reserve with an interest rate hike to prop up a slumping peso.

Currencies, Markets 1:00am EDT

China's Baidu to repurchase $1 bln shares after investor selldown

BEIJING, July 30 - Baidu Inc, China's biggest search engine company, said on Thursday it will repurchase $1 billion of its shares, after the company's stock price was hammered by investors following weak earnings results on Monday.

UPDATE 4-Brazil opts for steep rate hike in end to bold tightening

BRASILIA, July 29 - Brazil raised interest rates to a nine-year high on Wednesday, but signaled it was ending one of the world's most aggressive tightening cycles despite fears that a weakening local currency could stoke already high inflation.

Currencies, Markets 29 Jul 2015

Chicago mayor proposes slew of bond sales amid shaky finances

CHICAGO, July 29 - Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Wednesday proposed more than $2.5 billion of bond sales even as the city faces big budget deficits and the possibility that its already-low credit ratings could fall further.

Markets 29 Jul 2015

Brazil hikes interest rates to 14.25 pct to curb inflation

BRASILIA, July 29 - Brazil's central bank raised interest rates to 14.25 percent from 13.75 percent as expected on Wednesday, delivering another hefty increase to stifle inflationary risks from a sharp depreciation of the local currency.

Currencies, Markets, 29 Jul 2015

Petco in talks with banks for IPO-source

July 29 - Pet supplies retailer Petco Animal Supplies Inc has been in talks with investment banks in recent weeks for an initial public offering, a person familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.


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