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Starbucks to boost number of shops by almost 50 percent

Joseph Pisani, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 8:11am

Starbucks plans to open 12,000 new locations within five years, boosting the total number of its coffee shops worldwide by almost 50 percent.

Losses for drugmakers pull US stocks mostly lower

Marley Jay, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 8:11am

U.S. stocks are mixed Wednesday morning as large drugmakers take losses and most other industries move slightly higher. Bond yields are falling, and investors are buying stocks that pay large dividends. That's leading to gains for real estate investment trusts, utilities and phone companies.

Houston-bound Southwest flight diverted after pressure loss

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 8:00am

A Southwest Airlines flight bound for Houston was diverted to Jackson, Mississippi, after a loss in cabin pressure that prompted oxygen masks to deploy.

Nobel economics winner Hart worried about Trump's econ plans

David Keyton, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 8:00am

Nobel economics prize laureate Oliver Hart says he's not impressed by President-elect Donald Trump's plans for the U.S. economy.

Irish court orders Russian oligarch's assets unfrozen

Shawn Pogatchnik, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 8:00am

A Dublin judge on Wednesday ordered Irish authorities to unfreeze 100 million euros ($107 million) in cash belonging to an exiled Russian oligarch, ruling that police had provided no evidence that the funds were illegally gained as Russia contends.

The Latest: Renzi says he will resign with budget's passage

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 7:50am

The Latest on the political crisis in Italy (all times local):

2 Abu Dhabi banks to merge into largest Gulf Arab bank

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 7:40am

Stockholders at two Abu Dhabi banks have agreed to a plan to merge the firms, which would create the biggest bank in the Gulf.

Amid battle with IS, Iraq parliament approves next budget

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 7:20am

Iraq's parliament has approved next year's budget of about 100.67 trillion Iraqi dinars, or nearly $85.17 billion.

Industrial gas makers Linde, Praxair resume merger talks

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 7:20am

Industrial gas makers Linde AG and Praxair Inc. are resuming talks about a possible merger that they abandoned in September.

Nigeria, Morocco agree to build natural gas pipeline

Michelle Faul, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 7:20am

Nigeria and Morocco have agreed to build a pipeline to carry Nigerian natural gas to North Africa and Europe in a major initiative to boost energy production across West Africa and create industrial hubs to attract foreign investment, a joint statement said Wednesday.

ECB seen expanding stimulus amid Trump, Italy uncertainties

David McHugh and Pan Pylas, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 7:10am

Faced with weak growth and inflation across the 19-country eurozone, the European Central Bank is expected to extend its stimulus program for at least another six months when it concludes its latest policy meeting on Thursday.

Innovation or a monopoly? AT&T, Time Warner go before Senate

Marcy Gordon, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 6:40am

The CEOs of AT&T and Time Warner are heading to Capitol Hill in a bid to convince senators that a merger of their two companies will mean innovative new experiences for consumers.

Pfizer fined for hiking epilepsy drug price 2,600 pct in UK

Danica Kirka, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 6:30am

British regulators fined U.S. drugmaker Pfizer and distributor Flynn Pharma a record 89.4 million pounds ($112.7 million) Wednesday for increasing the cost of an epilepsy drug by as much as 2,600 percent.

Trump promises to heal divisions, plans visit to Ohio State

Jonathan Lemire, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 6:02am

President-elect Donald Trump promised to "heal our divisions and unify our country" as he prepares to meet with some of the victims of last week's car-and-knife attack at Ohio State University.

Libyan militias launch assault on vital oil terminals

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 5:50am

Libyan militias that were expelled from the eastern city of Benghazi are now advancing toward the country's vital oil terminals, seeking to establish control over Libya's primary revenue source.

Huffington Post names founder Arianna Huffington's successor

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 5:32am

The Huffington Post has tapped New York Times editor Lydia Polgreen to succeed founder Arianna Huffington as its editor-in-chief.

Global stocks mostly higher on telecoms news, stimulus hopes

Yuri Kageyama, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 5:22am

Global stock markets rose Wednesday amid optimism about the telecommunications industry and as investors expect more central bank stimulus in the eurozone.

Iran moves to change its currency unit back to the toman

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 5:10am

Iran's official IRNA news agency says that President Hassan Rouhani's administration is proposing changing the name and denomination of the country's currency.

Study: Thousands of Bangladesh kids working 64 hours a week

Julhas Alam, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 7th - 4:11am

Thousands of Bangladeshi children who live in the capital's slums are working illegally for an average of 64 hours a week, with many employed by the garment industry making clothing for top global brands, according to a report released Wednesday.