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(MENAFN - AFP) The Netherlands on Monday launched its first-ever "intelligent bicycle", fitted with an array of electronic devices to help bring down the high accident rate among elderly cyclists in the bicycle-mad country.

Developed for the government by the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO), the intelligent bicycle prototype runs on electricity, ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) More than 6,800 people have now died from the Ebola virus, almost all of them in west Africa, the World Health Organization said Monday.

The UN health agency reported that as of December 13, there had been 18,464 cases of infection from the deadly virus in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, and 6,841 people had died.

WHO did not provide an update of cases ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) The rapid slide of the ruble is a "critical situation" and the Russian central bank will take additional measures soon, the bank's first deputy chairman Sergei Shvetsov said Tuesday.

"The situation is critical. We could not imagine this in our worst nightmare a year ago," he was quoted by Interfax as saying.

The overnight hike in its key interest to ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) Oil suffered another dizzying plunge on Tuesday, with Brent crude sliding to a five-year low under $59 as markets were rocked by shrinking Chinese manufacturing output and turmoil in Russia.

In afternoon trade in London, benchmark contract Brent North Sea crude for January delivery slumped to $58.89. Earlier it had fallen as far as $58.50 per barrel -- the ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) US automaker Chrysler unveiled Tuesday its new name, FCA US, reflecting its subsidiary status to Italian parent Fiat Chrysler Automobiles.

Until now, the company, the smallest of the "Big Three" US automakers including General Motors and Ford Motor, was known as the Chrysler Group.

The company was gradually acquired by Milan-based Fiat after emerging ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) The rapid slide of the ruble is a "critical situation" and the Russian central bank will take additional measures soon, the bank's first deputy chairman Sergei Shvetsov said Tuesday.

"The situation is critical. We could not imagine this in our worst nightmare a year ago," he was quoted by Interfax as saying. The overnight key rate hike to 17 percent "will be ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) Oil suffered another dizzying plunge on Tuesday, with Brent crude sliding to a five-year low under $59 as markets were rocked by shrinking Chinese manufacturing output and turmoil in Russia.

At midday in London, benchmark contract Brent North Sea crude for January delivery slumped to $58.50 per barrel -- the lowest level since May 2009 -- and New York's West ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) New construction of US homes fell in November, but that was offset by a sharp upward revision of the prior month's starts, according to official data released Tuesday.

Private housing starts fell 1.6 percent from October to an annual rate of 1.028 million, the Commerce Department reported.

October housing starts were revised up to a pace of 1.045 million ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) Britain's annual inflation rate slid to a 12-year low of 1.0 percent in November, driven down by tumbling oil prices, official data showed Tuesday.

The 12-month Consumer Price Index (CPI) dropped from a rate of 1.3 percent in October, the Office for National Statistics said in a statement.

"Food and motor fuel prices, which have historically been upward ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) Russia's emergency midnight move to raise interest rates to 17 percent failed on Tuesday to arrest the ominous slide of the ruble as the currency set a new all-time record after a brief rally.

The ruble weakened to nearly 67 rubles against the dollar after bouncing back briefly to 61 rubles earlier Tuesday following the central bank's move to hike interest ...

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