WORLD FINANCE UPDATE:
Better-than-expected US jobs figures combined with disappointing inflation data out of New Zealand are weighing on the Australian dollar.
At 0630 AEDT on Friday, the local currency was trading at 87.56 US cents, down from 87.60 cents on Thursday.
And the Australian share market looks set to open higher, after gains on Wall Street overnight on the back of some strong company earnings.
At 0704 AEDT on Friday, the December share price index futures contract was up 17 points points at 5,389.
WASHINGTON - New claims for US unemployment insurance benefits rose slightly last week but remained below 300,000 for the sixth straight week, government data shows.
LONDON - BHP Billiton bosses have made a strong sales pitch regarding the company's proposed demerger, telling shareholders in London they'd benefit from the next step in the big miner's "evolution".
LONDON, Oct 23 AAP - BHP Billiton boss Andrew Mackenzie says West Australian Premier Colin Barnett is "completely wrong" to suggest the mining giant and Rio Tinto are flooding the iron ore market and placing downward pressure on prices, which could potentially squeeze out smaller players.
NEW YORK - General Motors has reported lower third-quarter earnings as weakness in South America and Europe more than offset an improved performance in North America.
MADRID - Spain's painfully high unemployment rate eased further last quarter, dipping under 24 per cent for the first time since 2011 as economic recovery apparently gained pace, official data shows.
GENEVA - Credit Suisse's profits more than doubled in the third quarter as Switzerland's second-largest bank benefited from cost cutting, brisk business in emerging markets and the services it provides for wealthy clients.
NEW YORK - Comcast Corp's third-quarter net income jumped 50 per cent in the third quarter, helped by a one-time tax settlement, growth in internet subscribers and fewer defectors from its cable service.
ST PAUL, Minnesota - Diversified manufacturer 3M's third-quarter net income rose six per cent on higher revenue across all divisions.
NEW YORK - US industrial giant Caterpillar has reported sharply improved earnings for the third quarter despite slower global economic growth.
HELSINKI - Nokia appears to have turned around its fortunes after the sale of its ailing mobilephone unit to Microsoft, reporting a third-quarter net profit of 747 million euros ($A1.12 billion), from a loss of 91 million euros a year earlier. Sales grew 13 per cent.
TOKYO - US billionaire Daniel Loeb, who last year tried to push Sony to spin off a key part of its business, has sold his shares in the struggling firm saying "more urgency will be necessary" to get it back on track.
THE HAGUE, Netherlands - Dutch food and cosmetics giant Unilever has posted a third-quarter drop in sales down 2.0 per cent, blaming a slowdown in emerging markets, particularly in China.
BRUSSELS - Business activity in the 18-nation eurozone strengthened slightly in October, a key survey shows, but overall the economy remained weak with new orders low and pressure on prices.
MOSCOW - Russian investigators have detained four more staff members at the Moscow airport where the chief executive of French oil giant Total died when his plane collided with a snowplough.