• IMF approves China's yuan as elite reserve currency

    The International Monetary Fund welcomed China's yuan into its elite reserve currency basket on Monday, recognizing the ascendance of the Asian power in the global economy. The yuan, also known as the renminbi, will join the US dollar, euro, Japanese yen and British pound next year in the basket of currencies the IMF uses as an international reserve asset. IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde called the decision "an important milestone in the integration of the Chinese economy into the global financial system." "It is also a recognition of the progress that the Chinese authorities have made in the past years in reforming China's monetary and financial systems." The decision by the IMF executive board solidifies China's ambition to see the government-controlled yuan achieve global status as one of the world's top currencies alongside the United States, Europe and Japan.

    AFP News
  • Wife of exiled Valdes slams United

    Victor Valdes's wife has slammed Manchester United for failing to invite the Spanish goalkeeper to a high-profile charity event at Old Trafford. The Premier League club held its annual dinner for Unicef on Sunday and many United players were in attendance, but Valdes, who is out of favour with boss Louis van Gaal, was not on the guest list. The 33-year-old's wife Yolanda Cardona took to Instagram to criticise the club for their conduct.

    AFP News
  • Philippines' 'Dirty Harry' mayor launches presidential bid

    In a rambling, obscenity-filled speech, Davao mayor Rodrigo Duterte said he would take a zero-tolerance approach to crime and admitted personally killing criminals. The combative mayor even lashed out at Pope Francis, blaming him for causing traffic jams in the capital of the overwhelmingly Roman Catholic nation when he visited in January. "Pope, you son of a -----, why don't you go home," he said.

    AFP News
  • Putin accuses Turkey over IS oil as pilot is returned to Russia

    Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday accused Ankara of shooting down a Russian warplane to protect supplies of oil from the Islamic State group to Turkey, after snubbing his Turkish counterpart at a climate conference in France. The Kremlin strongman fired the latest salvo in the furious war of words over the downing of the Russian jet on the Syrian border last week as the body of a pilot killed in the incident was returned home. Turkish authorities meanwhile again pledged not to apologise over the incident, as Moscow rolled out its sanctions aimed at exacting economic revenge.

    AFP News
  • Retiring Bryant receives high praise from peers

    The NBA fraternity reacted quickly to Kobe Bryant's announcement Sunday that he would retire at the end of the season, with some calling it "sad" while other spoke of his incredible legacy. Bryant, 37, one of the greatest US basketball players ever, will retire after spending his entire 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers. NBA commissioner Adam Silver was one of the first to respond to Bryant's announcement.

    AFP News
  • Everton paid the price for celebrating too much - Howard

    (Reuters) - Everton were guilty of celebrating Ross Barkley's late goal for too long as Bournemouth snatched a dramatic 3-3 draw in the eighth minute of stoppage time on Saturday, goalkeeper Tim Howard said. Everton went into the interval 2-0 up, but Bournemouth drew level only for Barkley to strike in the fifth minute of stoppage time to send players and fans running on to the pitch in wild celebrations. Referee Kevin Friend added on extra minutes after the pitch invasion giving Bournemouth's Junior Stanislas the opportunity to grab an unlikely equaliser.

  • Los Angeles deputy describes rescuing newborn buried alive

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — Los Angeles County sheriff's Deputy Adam Collette knelt on the asphalt and heard the muffled cries of a baby who had been buried alive.

    Associated Press 56 mins ago
  • Katie Holmes: 'I regret nothing'

    Katie Holmes wouldn't change anything in her life, insisting she has learnt from everything she has been through.

    Cover Media
  • Dollar rides high as ECB set to boost eurozone stimulus

    The dollar rode high Monday as the European Central Bank looked set to inject more stimulus into the eurozone this week. Amid widespread expectations the ECB will announce additional stimulus measures ...

  • Australia gets three bidders for huge submarine contract

    Three international bidders are seeking a contract worth up to Aus$50 billion (US$36 billion) to build a next-generation submarine fleet for Australia, it was confirmed Monday. Submissions have been received from DCNS of France, Germany's TKMS and the Japanese government, Australia's Defence Minister Marise Payne announced as the deadline closed. The contract is to replace the nation's current diesel and electric-powered Collins Class submarines.

    AFP News
  • 'Fast and Furious' French trafficker arrested in Bangkok

    BANGKOK (AP) — A French drug trafficker who was part of a notorious international network that authorities say copied tactics from Hollywood's "Fast and Furious" films was arrested in Bangkok, officials said Monday.

    Associated Press
  • Inside Sofia Vergara and Joe Manganiello's 'super private' honeymoon

    Sofia Vergara and Joe Manganiello were "super private and very much in love" on their stunning honeymoon at a private luxury resort on the Turks and Caicos islands.

    Cover Media
  • For some people, the older the smartphone, the better

    Between splashy launches, lavish new-phone offers (get a free HDTV on activation!) and frequent software updates that slow down your old handset, it sometimes feels like the entire technology industry ...

    Associated Press
  • Gigi Hadid asks fans not to be so judgemental after Zayn Malik date

    Gigi Hadid has hit Twitter to plead with fans to keep their opinions to themselves after photos of her holding hands with One Direction singer Zayn Malik hit the Internet.

    Cover Media
  • CPF interest rates of up to 3.5 per cent extended

    Central Provident Fund (CPF) members will continue to earn interest rates of up to 3.5 per cent per annum on their Ordinary Account (OA) monies from 1 January to 31 March in 2016.

    Yahoo Newsroom
  • IS executes 3,500 in Syria since declaring 'caliphate': monitor

    The Islamic State group has executed more than 3,500 people in Syria, including nearly 2,000 civilians, since declaring its "caliphate" in June last year, a monitor said Sunday. In the last month alone IS executed 53 people -- including 35 civilians -- in areas it controls in Syria, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. The new figures from the Britain-based Observatory bring to 3,591 the number of people executed by IS in Syria since it declared its Islamic "caliphate" after seizing control of large parts of the country.

    AFP News
  • One of the hottest gift items this Christmas just got a huge endorsement from Wall Street

    Mike Mozart/Flickr Wearables are one of the hottest … Continued The post One of the hottest gift items this Christmas just got a huge endorsement from Wall Street appeared first on Business Insider.

    Business Insider
  • After uncertainty, new start for Syrian family in Germany

    ZWICKAU, Germany (AP) — Just before dawn, a worker shook the matriarch of the refugee family out of sleep at their asylum center in a depressed German town.

    Associated Press
  • Psy says 'no chance' of another Gangnam Style success

    "Gangnam Style" star Psy acknowledged Monday that he could never repeat the phenomenal global success of his 2012 hit, but said he was perfectly happy being "just another" K-pop artist. The quirky South Korean singer was catapulted to unlikely international stardom after the "Gangnam Style" music video, with its invisible horse-riding dance, went viral. The song -- a satire of the luxury lifestyle of residents in Seoul's glitzy Gangnam district -- remains the most-watched video of all time on YouTube, with more than 2.4 billion views.

    AFP News
  • Ex-Malaysia envoy guilty of New Zealand indecent assault

    A former Malaysian diplomat pleaded guilty Monday to the indecent assault of a New Zealand woman, with a court hearing he burst into her bedroom naked from the waist down. Mohammed Rizalman bin Ismail was a military attache at Malaysia's Wellington embassy when the incident happened last year, and the case caused outrage when he fled to his homeland citing diplomatic immunity. Rizalman was eventually extradited to face the New Zealand courts and had pleaded not guilty to attempted rape and burglary.

    AFP News