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World Business

Cars

Ferrari cuts loose - is this the beginning of the end?

What sets Ferrari apart from its rival is its powerful brand, which might help it survive as a niche carmaker.

10:06am For Ferrari, proving it can thrive as an independent sports-car maker may be a tougher challenge than a Formula One victory.

US GDP stronger than expected

Despite decelerating from the second quarter's robust 4.6 percent growth rate, it was the fourth quarter out of five that the economy has expanded at or above a 3.5 per cent clip.

A smaller trade deficit and surge in defense spending buoyed US economic growth in the third quarter, but domestic demand slipped, hinting at some loss of momentum.

Indonesian president Joko Widodo plans major tax overhaul in quest for cash

Finance minister Bambang Brodjonegoro prepares to raise taxes and cut subsidies.

Neil Chatterjee and Rieka Rahadiana The tax man cometh. And next year in Indonesia, there will be more of them.

World

Tesco facing criminal probe over accounting scandal

The overstatement of its first-half profits has led to the suspension of eight senior Tesco staff members.

Britain's Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has opened a formal criminal investigation into accounting errors at Tesco, raising the stakes in a scandal that has hammered the reputation of the country's biggest grocer.

US Fed ends quantitative easing but says interest rates will stay low

US Fed chair Janet Yellen.

Bianca Hartge-Hazelman The Federal Reserve has decided to end its quantitative easing stimulus program, after six years of pumping money into the economy via asset purchases to shore up growth.

Finance

Glowing jellyfish spur romance as Japan bank turns matchmaker

Eligible customers are invited to meet in front of a tank with glowing jellyfish for the bank's

Deposit your money at a bank in northern Japan and you could get more than interest payments. You might end up getting married.

Tech

Facebook steps up spending, triggering a share slide

The world's biggest social media network plans to boost its spending by more than half next year as it seeks to expand further.

Facebook has warned it will dramatically step up its spending in 2015 and projected a slowdown in revenue growth in the December quarter, triggering a share sell-off that sliced a tenth off its market value.

Up

US consumer confidence rebounds in October

07 Oct 2001:  Tampa Bay Buccaneers fans wave an american flag during the game against the Green Bay Packers at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. The Buccaneers defeated the Packers 14-10. DIGITAL IMAGE. Mandatory Credit: Andy Lyons/Allsport

US consumer confidence rebounded in October after the prior month's slump, a cheery sign for the upcoming holiday shopping season, the Conference Board says.

World

Australian subsidiaries caught up in US bribe case

A US company has been fined for paying bribes to west African countries.

GEORGIA WILKINS A US drilling company has been fined $US5 million over bribes it allegedly paid through Australian and African subsidiaries. 

Spain

Vodafone acquisition dogged by tax fraud allegations

Vodafone says it was unaware of the tax investigation at acquisition target Ono.

Christopher Williams Vodafone's £6 billion acquisition of Ono has been tarnished by allegations that the Spanish cable operator's profits were inflated by tax fraud.

Europe

European bank stress tests: At least they're not worse, says Greece

Niki Kitsantonis As Greece continues trying to claw its way out of its debt hole, the results of the European Central Bank's review of the country's lenders were hailed in Athens on Sunday - because they were not worse.

US

Microsoft revenue tops estimates as revamp plan rolls ahead

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella's revamp plan for the tech giant appears to be making progress.

Dina Bass Microsoft's quarterly sales topped estimates on cloud-computing growth and recovering personal-computer sales, as chief executive Satya Nadella showed progress in his effort to revive the company.

Internet

Alibaba's Ma heads to Hollywood in hunt for content

Armed with $US25 billion from Alibaba's IPO last month, Jack Ma is on the prowl for entertainment to sell to Chinese consumers through the company's set-top boxes

Having entered Wall Street with the biggest-ever IPO, Alibaba billionaire Jack Ma is pushing into Hollywood meeting with studios to acquire online content, people with knowledge of the situation said.

World

Fears for tough penalties grow as India cleans up business

Indian coal licences have been cancelled after graft claims.

Rafael Nam and Abhishek Vishnoi India's regulators feel emboldened to take on even companies long sheltered by political connections.

Trading

Shouts on bond-trading floor yield to robot beeps

QMM beats Gordon Gekko: Wall Street's trading floors increasingly sound like gaming arcades as human traders are being replaced by beeping robots.

The face of automation on Wall Street is a computer hooked up to nine blinking screens that goes by the name Quantitative Market Maker, or QMM. Until last year, the work that QMM performs was handled by human traders, who would shout prices into a phone and yell "Done!" when the trade was executed.

Takeovers

Investors plan $2.5 billion takeover of Reebok

Weakened: Shares of Reebok's owner Adidas have been the worst performers on Germany's DAX benchmark index amid pressure on the company's earnings.

A group of investors are planning to bid about 1.7 billion euros ($2.5 billion) for sports-goods giant Adidas' Reebok unit, the Wall Street Journal said, citing people familiar with the matter.

Fixed income

Bond market's brightest turn to oil to see what's next

Capitulation of the inflationistas: Wall Street strategists have now moved to analyse the oil price.

Following the most turbulent period for US bonds in more than three years, the top strategists are looking less at jobs and manufacturing and more at the price of oil for clues as to what lies ahead.

Taiwan confirms desire for free trade deal with Australia

Taiwan is seeking a trade deal with Australia: (pictured) National Day celebrations this month.

CHRIS ZAPPONE Taiwan has confirmed its desire to forge a trade deal with Australia and rejected suggestions that mainland China could "meddle" in its efforts for deeper regional ties.

Internet

As growth in search advertising slows, what's next for Google?

Some Investors are getting concerned that Google's golden goose - its search engine - is showing signs of age.

Google is still pulling in money hand over fist, but Wall Street is hungry for the company's next move. The problem was that in the earnings report, the internet giant showed signs ts ultra-profitable business in search advertising was starting to slow.

CEOs

Ex-Microsoft's Steve Ballmer all charged up on basketball

Binged on

Last December, Steve Ballmer found himself in a highly unusual situation: The former Microsoft boss had time on his hands. He watched TV, learned some Hebrew. Then he bought a basketball team.

Toys

Frozen's Queen Elsa beats Barbie in toy sales

Barbie has seen its sales slump as children obsess about Frozen and the Lego Movie.

Barbie may still have Ken and her Dream House, but she's struggling to hang on to the thing she needs most: her fan base. Toymaker Mattel has revealed the Barbie brand suffered a staggering 21 per cent slump in sales during the third quarter,

Tech

Google shares hit as profit dips

Google says a hiring surge helped inflate its costs.

Google says its profit in the past quarter dipped slightly from a year earlier, even as revenues for the technology giant showed a sharp increase.

Economy

World economy gives investors a scare as eyes focus on US

Growing doubts about the strength of the global economy caused topsy-turvy trading on stock markets this week.

The global economy faces its biggest test of confidence since the European sovereign debt crisis as investors fear it's running out of steam.

FBI warns US businesses of cyber attacks, blames Beijing

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The US Federal Bureau of Investigation warned US businesses on Wednesday that hackers it believes to be backed by the Chinese government have recently launched attacks on US companies.

Apple, Facebook to pay for women to freeze eggs

Frozen egg

Silicon Valley is known for offering incredible job perks, but Apple and Facebook have gone to a new level, offering to freeze the eggs of their female employees.

Inflation

China price data stokes global growth fears

China's inflation rate in September came in lower than expected, pushed down by lower food prices.

MICHAEL KOZIOL Weak September consumer price data in China and Europe has stoked fears price growth may be slowing longer-term in a sluggish global economy, as low interest rates fail to stir economic activity.

Technology

Apple, Facebook will pay for female staff to freeze their eggs

Silicon Valley's no-bump perks to keep women working: Egg freezing is an increasingly popular option for women wanting to delay having children.

Apple and Facebook will help pay for female employees to freeze their eggs, signaling a willingness to spend on perks and benefits in a race to acquire top-flight talent.

World

Converse sues to protect its Chucks

Rachel Abrams For decades, the Converse star, stripes and rubber toe topper have been hallmarks of coolness, from the basketball court to high school hallways.

World

Ireland to phase out 'double Irish' tax break used by Google and other companies

Google is one firm using the scheme, with a Dublin-based subsidiary generating the revenue, much of it from online advertising, before paying it in royalties to a separate Google unit in Ireland, which is a resident in Bermuda for tax purposes.

Stephen Castle and Mark Scott After years of debate over tax breaks that have helped lure big multinational corporations to Ireland, the Irish government said Tuesday that it would phase out a measure used by technology companies including Google to reduce their bills.

HK

Executives quit despite CY Leung's secret multi-million dollar deal

Top managers resign just weeks after CY Leung signed a lucrative agreement to retain their services.

John Garnaut, Richard Baker and Nick McKenzie Two of the three top managers in the DTZ property services empire left the business just weeks after the man who built it, Hong Kong's chief executive, CY Leung, signed a £4 million agreement promising to retain their services.

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