November 15th, 2011
07:48 AM GMT
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While Thailand’s floods offer a golden opportunity for automakers to diversify their investment across the region – hunting down cheaper suppliers in nearby Vietnam or Indonesia – the kingpin of the Thai market, Toyota, has no plans to go anywhere.

“Toyota is so comfortable in Thailand, I don’t see any major move away any time soon,” said auto industry analyst Michael Dunne. FULL POST

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November 15th, 2011
04:41 AM GMT
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(CNN) - What does “the 1%” see when viewing news reports on the Wall Street demonstrators camping in the cold to protest wealth disparity? Apparently one rich rapper sees an opportunity to make money.

Rapper and business mogul Shawn Carter, better known as Jay-Z, has debuted a collection of t-shirts on his Rocawear line playing off the Occupy Wall Street movement. The shirts, which are selling for $22.99 and read "Occupy All Streets”, were wiped from the brand's website over the weekend in response to allegations that Carter – whose net worth is estimated at $450 million – was trying to profit from the 99%, but are back up again.

Although Carter sold Rocawear to Iconix Brand Group in 2007 for $204 million, according to the New York Times, he continues to be creatively involved in the brand.
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November 14th, 2011
06:40 AM GMT
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Honolulu, Hawaii (CNN) – Under the fiery orange of a setting Hawaiian sun, with bright green palm fronds framing his television shot, U.S. President Barack Obama reaffirmed for one last time the message he’s pushed all weekend during this year’s APEC summit: the U.S. sees its future in Asia and is here to stay.

“No region will do more to shape our long-term economic future than the Asia-Pacific.”

As the world’s fastest growing region accounting for more than half of the world’s total GDP, Mr. Obama further stressed Asia is key to his administration goal of doubling U.S. exports. And in a clear pivot for his domestic constituents, he added that more trade means more jobs for Americans.
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November 14th, 2011
05:32 AM GMT
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(CNN) - The “King of Good Times” is facing some grim times at the moment.

Airline group chief and billionaire business tycoon, Vijay Mallya is struggling to keep India’s Kingfisher Airlines afloat due to surging fuel costs and fuel taxes.

In the past week, the Bangalore-based carrier has cancelled 200 flights in hopes to reduce its debt from Rs. 6,500 crore (about $1.4 billion) to Rs. 3,000 crore ($600 million). Kingfisher has suffered a loss of Rs.1027 crores ($200 million) in the past fiscal year, adding to its mounting debt.
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November 11th, 2011
05:43 PM GMT
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London (CNN) - In many ways Italy is a tale of two countries.

Living standards in the north are pretty high while chronic unemployment dogs parts of the south. Successive governments have failed to bridge the economic gap despite numerous rounds of devolution. To this day, the north-south divide remains raw in the minds in the minds of many there.

Now Mario Monti has been nominated to succeed Silvio Berlusconi as prime minister, the gulf between Italy’s current and future leaders is likely to be almost as large.

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November 11th, 2011
04:46 PM GMT
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(CNN) – Investor Jim Rogers says Europe needs to "start over" to wipe out decades of mistakes and reboot its economy.

Rogers, speaking to CNN's John Defterios, said Europe needed to allow some institutions to fail in order to ensure the system survived.

The process would be "painful, it's going to hurt a lot but after two or three years we will start over from a very strong and renewed base," he said.

He said the euro is a "good thing" and troubled economies such as Greece should remain under its umbrella. "I would stay in, I would take the lumps, I would take pain, I would have huge write offs but I would stay in if I were those countries."

However, he said Europe could be facing a lost decade.

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November 11th, 2011
07:31 AM GMT
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(CNN) –Today, November 11, 2011 or 11/11/11, marks the second to last repetitive date of its kind this century—12/12/2012 will be the last—and around the world weddings, births, the Egyptian pyramids and even corduroy are being influenced by the supposed cosmic significance attached to this date.

The date, which happens to be Veterans Day in the U.S. and Remembrance Day in Commonwealth countries, is a perfect palindrome and occurs only once a century.

Couples all over the world are scrambling to get married on this supposedly auspicious date. In Las Vegas, the Clark County clerk’s office has already received 3,500 applications for marriages on November 11; usually there are only 1,000 applications per month, the International Business Times reported. FULL POST

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November 11th, 2011
05:06 AM GMT
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New York (CNN) – I have never met anyone who was shot nine times at point blank range.

I wasn't sure what to expect from rapper 50 Cent. I went to interview him about his new energy drink Street King. 50 Cent has linked the product to the United Nations World Food Program, promising to donate one meal for every bottle sold. It is an ambitious goal, but then Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson is an ambitious man.

Ambitious and, as I discovered, very nice. Yes, nice. In fact, it was hard to reconcile the scowling ripped rapper whose album “Get Rich Or Die Tryin'” went multi-platinum, with the soft-spoken, suit-wearing CEO sitting in front of me.
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November 10th, 2011
08:11 PM GMT
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London (CNN) – The spectre of a two-tiered Europe has once again muscled its way center stage, as rumblings grow around the discrepancies between the strong and the weak economies struggling to co-exist on the continent.

Suggestions the eurozone is diverging into two groups is hardly controversial: One only has to look the economic performances of its 17 countries during the last 18 months.

Clearly some economies are thriving under the common currency, while others have collapsed. Greece can’t pay its bills and is surviving on the funds of Europe’s bailout pot and the International Monetary Fund. Portugal and Ireland are, of course, in the same club.
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November 10th, 2011
07:45 PM GMT
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London (CNN) - He's been dubbed 'super Mario' but the man at the helm of the European Central Bank might as well be 'superman' such is the monumental responsibility that rests on his shoulders - a responsibility that doesn’t really fall into his job remit either.

As Italy successfully braved the bond markets this week with a €5 billion sale, traders say the country had much to thank Mario Draghi, its former central bank chief, for.

At 6.08%, the Italian Treasury had to offer a whopping 2.51% more than when it last sold bonds on October 11. Having said that, Italian 10-year bond yields traded lower than their recent euro-era highs. That means Italy is out of the panic zone for now at least.

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