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HONG KONG (MarketWatch) - Samsung Electronics Co.'s latest 3G handset is set to reach a milestone of unit shipments faster than had been anticipated, according to research by Macquarie Securities, which cited contact with component suppliers for the device. Samsung's Galaxy S III, due to launch in Europe later in May, should reach the 10 million mark in terms of global total shipments in the third quarter, about five months earlier than the Galaxy S II from the time of its launch, and seven months earlier than the Galaxy S, according to Macquarie. Macquarie said its forecasts of 3G handset

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shipments by Samsung this year now appear too conservative. "We believe the GS3 has little competition in the premium smartphone market until Apple's widely expected launch of the next iPhone in September," The broker also presented graphical data as showing that Samsung's share of the global smartphone market is set to rise while Apple Inc.'s share is to flatten. Samsung shares ended Thursday's session in Seoul down 1.3%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.





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LOS ANGELES (MarketWatch) -- Hong Kong stocks gained in early Thursday trading, with support from financials, which benefited from a rally by their peers elsewhere in Asia and on Wall Street overnight. In the early minutes, the benchmark Hang Seng Index was 1.1% higher at 21,987.4, while the mainland-China-focused Hang Seng China Enterprises Index gained 1.2% to 12,630.6. Advancers included Bank of China Ltd. , up 1.5%, and HSBC Holdings Plc. rising 0.9%. China Mobile Ltd. , seen as a defensive play if Beijing tightens policy further, extended its Wednesday gains to rise 2.4%. Lenovo Group L
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td. added 4.2% after reports of rising PC shipments worldwide. The Hong Kong rally outpaced a 0.5% rise in the Shanghai Composite, which traded at 3,187.7.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



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LONDON (MarketWatch) -- The European Commission said Wednesday that it has fined 10 chemicals groups a total of 173 million euros ($260 million) for fixing the price of plastic additives in two different cartels. The Commission said one of the cartels was for tin stabilizers, which help avoid decomposition of plastics, and operated between 1987 and 2000. The other operated between 1991 and 2000. The biggest fine was imposed on Akzo Nobel , which will pay a total of 40.6 million euros for its involvement in the two cartels. Also fined were Elementis , which will pay 32.6 million euros and Elf A
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quitaine , which must hand over 38.6 million euros. The Commission said Chemtura Corp. participated in the cartels but wasn't fined because it revealed their existence to the regulator.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



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SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- Toll Brothers Inc. said late Tuesday that preliminary results show that homebuilding revenue for the fourth quarter fell to $486.6 million from $691.1 million a year ago. Quarterly contracts rose to $430.8 million from $266.7 million in the year ago period.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.

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LONDON (MarketWatch) -- The German ZEW economic sentiment indicator slipped to 51.1 in November from a reading of 56.0 in October, the Mannheim-based Center for European Economic Research, or ZEW, said Tuesday. The economic expectations gauge was forecast to slip to 54.0. The ZEW current conditions index fell to -65.6 from -72.2 in October. The euro slipped after the data to trade at $1.4984 versus the dollar in recent action, a decline of 0.1% on the day.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on thi
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s news.



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SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- Sprint Nextel Corp. said Monday it will eliminate 2,000 to 2,500 positions in the fourth quarter as part of its effort to reduce labor costs by at least $350 million. The reductions will impact positions companywide, and will also affect contractor and other outside labor. "The impact on geographic locations will vary, and many impacted positions will be eliminated by Dec. 31, 2009," the company said in a statement. Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
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LONDON (MarketWatch) -- European shares climbed in early trading on Monday, with miners getting a lift from stronger metals prices and financials also performing well as Allianz shares jumped 4% after reporting third-quarter results. The U.K. FTSE 100 index rose 1% to 5,192.55, the German DAX index climbed 1.3% to 5,557.76 and the French CAC-40 index rose 1% to 3,744.92.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
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SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- Berkshire Hathaway said late Friday that third-quarter net income more than doubled as the insurance-focused conglomerate run by Warren Buffett benefited from a rebound in the value of its large equity investments and derivatives exposures. Third-quarter net income came in at $3.24 billion, or $2,087 per Class A equivalent share, versus $1.06 billion, or $682 per Class A equivalent share, a year earlier. Operating earnings, which exclude investment and derivative gains and losses, were $2.06 billion, or $1,325 per Class A equivalent share, in the latest period.
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That was slightly lower than a year earlier. Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



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SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- On a 220-215 vote late Saturday night, the U.S. House of Representatives passed and sent to the Senate controversial legislation that would overhaul the nation's health-care system. The legislation, the cornerstone of President Barack Obama's domestic policy, would cost an estimated $1 trillion over 10 years and include a government-operated health-insurance program. The bill passed with 219 of 258 Democrats supporting it, and one of the 176 Repuplican representatives.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit
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MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



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SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- Berkshire Hathaway said late Friday that it plans to borrow roughly $8 billion to help the company pay for its acquisition of railroad operator Burlington Northern Santa Fe . Berkshire agreed earlier this week to pay $26 billion for the rest of Burlington it doesn't already own. The company is paying 60% of that with cash and the rest with Berkshire stock. In a regulatory filing late Friday, Berkshire said it "expects to fund about 50% of the total cash consideration of approximately $16 billion with internally generated cash and the remainder with borrowings e
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xpected to be repaid over a three year period." Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



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