The pound strengthened as the Bank of England said two policy makers wanted an interest-rate increase this month, marking the first split on rates in more than three years and the first under Governor Mark Carney.
Lowe's reported a rise in second-quarter profit and revenue Wednesday but the home improvement retailer also lowered its earnings guidance for the year.
Carlsberg A/S (CARLB) and Heineken NV, (HEIA) two of the world's top four brewers, signaled tougher times ahead for the beer industry as escalating political tensions in eastern Europe weigh on the region's economy.
New-home construction in the U.S. surged to an eight-month high in July, lifting the stock market and prospects for a broader economic recovery.
... * NDRC says 12 Japanese parts makers violated anti-monopoly law. * Yazaki, Sumitomo Electric, Denso, NSK among fined firms. * Auto sector under scrutiny by Chinese regulators.