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UPDATE 1-Total beats profit forecast, cost cuts to exceed targets

PARIS, July 29- French oil company Total posted higher than expected second-quarter profit on Wednesday, helped by increased refining margins in Europe and accelerated cost cuts to adjust to a low oil price environment. Europe's second biggest oil company reported adjusted net profit of $3.085 billion, beating analyst expectations of $2.61 billion and only...
Source: Reuters | By: Michel Rose
GM to invest $1 bln in India, double market share by 2020

NEW DELHI, July 29- General Motors Co will invest $1 billion in the next few years to turn operations in India into a new global auto manufacturing and export hub aimed at boosting sales in fast-growing emerging markets, top executives said on Wednesday. GM Chief Executive Officer Mary Barra said at a briefing in New Delhi that the investment in India was expected...
Source: Reuters
UPDATE 2-Barclays to speed up cost-cuts after new mis-selling hit

LONDON, July 29- Barclays' new executive chairman sought to stamp his mark on the bank on Wednesday by accelerating the sale of assets and cost cutting, after the group reported an 12 percent rise in profit and another big charge to compensate customers. Chairman John McFarlane, who arrived at Barclays in April with a reputation for taking bold action, laid out...
Source: Reuters | By: Steve Slater and Matt Scuffham
UPDATE 1-Panasonic Q1 profit falls 7 pct as housing tech sales decline

TOKYO, July 29- Japan's Panasonic Corp on Wednesday reported a 7 percent decline in first-quarter operating profit, missing analyst estimates, as sales fell in its appliances and housing technology businesses. While still known as a consumer electronics maker, Panasonic in recent years has turned its attention to new businesses such as high-tech auto parts...
Source: Reuters
UPDATE 1-Nintendo swings to Q1 op profit on strong figurine sales, weak yen

TOKYO, July 29- Japan's Nintendo Co Ltd on Wednesday booked a profit for the April-June quarter, defying market expectations for a loss due to a weaker yen and strong sales of its "amiibo" figurines which are sold as accessories to its popular games. Nintendo swung to a first-quarter operating profit of 1.1 billion yen from a loss of 9.5 billion yen a year earlier.
Source: Reuters
UPDATE 2-Belgium's Solvay to buy U.S. peer Cytec for $5.5 bln

*Solvay to finance deal with rights issue, debt sale. BRUSSELS, July 29- Belgian chemical group Solvay has agreed to buy U.S. peer Cytec for $5.5 billion, giving it a bigger presence in the lightweight materials business where demand from the aerospace industry is booming. Solvay said in a statement on Wednesday it would pay $75.25 per share for Cytec, which closed at...
Source: Reuters | By: Robert-Jan Bartunek
M'bishi Heavy shares slide; US nuclear plant claims jump to $7.6 bln

TOKYO, July 29- Shares in Mitsubishi Heavy Industries tumbled for a second day on Wednesday after the company said compensation claims related to the shutdown of California's San Onofre nuclear plant had surged to $7.6 billion. Southern California Edison, a unit of Edison International, and others had previously sought at least $4 billion, accusing...
Source: Reuters
RPT-UPDATE 4-Cash-rich Zurich Insurance eyes bid for British rival RSA

*Zurich spokesman says RSA would complement business. *RSA says has received no proposal from Zurich. *Zurich shares down 1.8 pct, RSA up 18 pct.
Source: Reuters | By: Katharina Bart and Carolyn Cohn
UPDATE 3-Honeywell to buy Melrose's utility metering business for $5.1 bln

July 28- Honeywell International Inc has made its largest purchase in more than a decade, agreeing to buy the utility consumption metering business of Britain's Melrose Industries Plc for about $5.1 billion. The move, announced on Tuesday, is the first major deal for Honeywell, the U.S. diversified industrial manufacturer, since it laid out a five-year plan in...
Source: Reuters | By: Esha Vaish and Lewis Krauskopf
UPDATE 2-Centene considers snapping up Medicare Advantage plans from rivals

July 28- Health insurer Centene Corp reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit and said it would consider buying the Medicare Advantage plans its rivals are likely to divest during the current phase of consolidation in the managed care industry. Anthem Inc said last week that it would buy Cigna Corp for about $54.2 billion, creating the largest U.S....
Source: Reuters | By: Amrutha Penumudi