* China growth data, French rating threat weigh* Government bonds, dollar riseBy Caroline ValetkevitchNEW YORK, Oct 18 (Reuters) - World stocks slipped on Tuesday and government bonds rose as slower-than-expected Chinese growth and a warning to France about keeping its top credit rating turned investors cautious.The warning from ratings agency Moody’s compounded investor jitters after comments this week by Germany’s finance minister, who said he saw no definitive solution on the euro zone debt crisis right away.The MSCI world equity index was down 0.6 percent, paring earlier losses as U.S. stocks turned modestly higher. The world index is still up roughly 11 percent from a 15-month low earlier this month.U.S. stocks’ gains were led by the financial sector after major banks reported quarterly results, including Bank of America . The second-largest U.S. bank by assets rose 6.8 percent to $6.44, while shares of Goldman Sachs were up 2 percent at $98.90 even after it posted a wider-than-expected quarterly loss.The Dow Jones industrial average was up 21.19 points, or 0.19 percent, at 11,418.19. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index was up 5.21 points, or 0.43 percent, at 1,206.07. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 3.75 points, or 0.14 percent, at 2,618.67.European stocks dipped 0.2 percent while emerging stocks lost 2.3 percent.”Risk aversion came back because everybody is focused on Europe,” said Suvrat Prakash, interest rate strategist at BNP Paribas in New York. “It seems that people are not counting on the European Union summit,” for a solution on the euro zone’s fiscal problems.Moody’s cautioned it may slap a negative outlook on France’s Aaa credit rating in the next three months if costs from helping to bail out banks and other euro zone members stretch its budget too thin.Optimism over a key European Union summit on Oct. 23 waned after German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said on Monday that even though European governments would adopt a five-point platform to address the crisis, a definitive solution would not be reached at the summit.In Asia, China’s gross domestic product growth eased to 9.1 percent in July-September at an annual rate, slightly below forecasts of 9.2 percent, indicating the world’s second-largest economy expanded at its slowest pace since the second quarter of 2009.U.S. Treasuries edged higher, pushing benchmark yields to their lowest in two weeks.Benchmark 10-year Treasury prices rose 13/32 in price to yield 2.11 percent compared with 2.18 percent late on Monday. Yields fell as low as 2.08 percent, their lowest since Oct 7.The French/German 10-year government bond yield spread widened to a euro era record of 101 basis points. French debt also underperformed its triple-A rated peer the Netherlands.Brent crude oil prices were lower, while the dollar gained 0.4 percent against a basket of major currencies. The euro fell 0.3 percent to $1.3701.After the U.S. stock market’s close on Tuesday, Apple was due to report results. Its shares were down 0.1 percent at $419.40.
* Says value of oil and gas properties has tripledTORONTO, Oct 18 (Reuters) - Sprott Resource Corp said on Tuesday it was exploring a sale of Waseca Energy Inc, a 81 percent owned oil subsidiary that has tripled the value of its oil and gas properties since the end of 2010.Sprott, which invests and operates through subsidiaries in the natural resources sector, said a sale of the unit was one of a range of alternatives being considered under a strategic review.”This process could result in a sale of Waseca, a sale of a material portion of the Waseca’s assets, or a corporate reorganization among other alternatives,” the company said in a statement.Waseca Chief Executive Michael Watson said the net present value of the company’s oil and gas properties had grown from C$108.9 million at the end of 2010 to C$333.9 million at the end of last month. In the same period, oil production rose from 1,050 barrels a day to 3,000 bbl/d.Waseca explores for and develop heavy oil resources in the Lloydminster area of Canada in central Alberta and Saskatchewan.Sprott Resource first invested in the company in January 2010 and has total investment in the company of C$44.2 million.Waseca has retained RBC Rundle, a division of RBC Capital Markets, to assist with the process. Sprott said there were no guarantees the process would result in a transaction.
Analysts surveyed by Reuters expected the firm to post on average, 784.6 million riyals in the third-quarter.
* Copper falls after soft Chinese data* Global stocks slip after six days of gainsBy Rodrigo CamposNEW YORK, Oct 13 (Reuters) - Global stocks and copper prices fell from recent highs on Thursday after weak data from China reinforced concerns about the global economy, while the euro fell on worries over the European debt crisis.The European Central bank warned about the effect of bondholder write-downs, and investor unease on the effectiveness of current measures to prevent the spread of the euro zone debt crisis was evidenced by a rise in the yields on Italian bonds.The ECB was forced back into bond purchases in a jittery Italian bond market.Major stock markets in recent days had jumped sharply on hopes the debt crisis was close to being resolved.Shares of JPMorgan Chase & Co. slumped 5.7 percent to $31.31 after the bank reported a drop in quarterly earnings. JPMorgan was the first major U.S. bank to report its quarterly results.Prices of German Bund and U.S. Treasury debt rose as investors sought relative safety.U.S. and European shares fell from multi-week highs after China reported its trade surplus narrowed for a second straight month in September. Both imports and exports were lower than expected.The data reflected global economic softness, which along with the euro zone debt crisis drove equities and commodities to post heavy losses in the third quarter.On Wall Street, an index of U.S. bank shares slid 4.3 percent.”JPMorgan is a good indicator of what is happening in the banking industry and a little bit of an insight into where consumer banking is headed.” said Kim Forrest, senior equity research analyst at Fort Pitt Capital Group in Pittsburgh.In midday trading in New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 101.34 points, or 0.88 percent, at 11,417.51. The S&P 500 was down 12.72 points, or 1.05 percent, at 1,194.53. The Nasdaq Composite was down 5.31 points, or 0.20 percent, at 2,599.42.The S&P 500 has run up more than 10 percent from a 2011 low hit on Oct. 4 and had notched its largest seven-day rally since March 2009 on growing optimism European leaders were making progress in tackling the region’s debt problems.World stocks as measured by MSCI were down 0.7 percent.The soft data from China also pressured copper prices . The industrial metal, often taken as a proxy for economic growth expectations, fell 2.5 percent. China is the world’s largest copper consumer, accounting for nearly 40 percent of global demand.The euro fell broadly, pulling back from a one-month high versus the dollar after the ECB warned about the impact on the currency and the region’s banks of involving bondholders in euro zone bailouts.The single currency hit a New York session low of $1.3683, according to Reuters data. It last traded at $1.3731, down 0.4 percent on the day. The euro on Wednesday touched its highest versus the greenback since Sept. 16.Italy sold 6.2 billion euros of debt, split across four bonds. But yields remained under pressure in the cast bond market, and the European Central Bank stepped into the secondary market after the auction, buying Italian debt to cap rising yields.”Even though the auctions went relatively smoothly, investors still remain reluctant to put money into that country because of doubts about the commitment of fiscal policy and political risk,” said Nick Stamenkovic, strategist at RIA Capital Markets.The Italian 10-year BTP yield was up to 5.822 percent from 5.738 percent late on Wednesday.The benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury note was up 16/32 point, with the yield at 2.155 percent.
Haubenstricker earlier in his career was a co-CFO at Electronic Data Systems, which Hewlett Packard later bought. He and Appel were colleagues at EDS.Zale, whose chains include Zales in the United States and Peoples Jewellers in Canada, has seen its sales improve this year after falling sharply during the recession, when it faced a liquidity crisis.Zale CEO Theo Killion in a statement praised Haubenstricker’s expertise in turnarounds as the company works to regain its market share.