SINGAPORE/TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian shares extended losses on Friday as caution over a U.S. jobs report overshadowed signals from the European Central Bank that it is willing to take further steps to shore up the European economy. U.S. stock futures fell 0.8 percent during the Asian day, pointing to a weaker opening on Wall Street as well after U.S. stocks ended slightly higher overnight. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 0.8 percent, and was on track to end the week down 4.2 percent.
By Yeganeh Torbati WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Saudi King Salman will meet with U.S. President Barack Obama in Washington on Friday to seek more support in countering Iran, as the Obama administration aims to use the visit to shore up relations after a period of tensions. The visit is the king's first to the United States since ascending to the throne in January, and comes after the United States agreed to a nuclear deal with Iran in July, raising Gulf Arab fears that the lifting of sanctions on Iran would enable it to pursue destabilizing policies in the Middle East.
Five-time champion Roger Federer strolled into the US Open third round as fellow old-timer Lleyton Hewitt bid farewell in trademark fighting style. On a dramatic day which saw a record created for the longest women's match, and a new Grand Slam high for retirements from the men's tournament, Andy Murray escaped his earliest exit in 10 years when he came back from two sets down to make the last 32. There was also a late security scare when a drone crashed into the corner of Louis Armstrong Stadium.
China's military reforms will be difficult and risky as they require a fundamental change in thinking and could affect special interest groups, the armed forces official paper said on Friday following the announcement of a 300,000 troop cut. President Xi Jinping unveiled the unexpected news of a reduction in the size of the armed forces on Thursday, at a military parade marking the end of World War Two. The Defence Ministry said the cut, part of broader reforms to up-grade and further professionalize the military, would be basically completed by 2017.
A US judge's decision to strike down New England Patriots Tom Brady's four-game "Deflate-gate" suspension means the superstar quarterback can play in the National Football League's season opener next Thursday. The ruling by US District Judge Richard Berman not only paves the way for Brady to take the field against the Pittsburgh Steelers but it is also a public relations embarrassment for commissioner Roger Goodell and calls into question his role as the league's ultimate authority. "Brady's four-game suspension is vacated, effective immediately," Berman ruled after failing in his effort to induce the warring sides to reach a settlement.
Friday will be the sixth-to-last negotiating day, with five more to follow in October, before the highly-anticipated November 30-December 11 UN conference opens in Paris in the presence of heads of state. Developing countries, in particular, were disappointed that the working document produced in Geneva in February -- a laundry list of often contradictory options for solving the pressing problem of global warming -- was still essentially the same. "The time for talking about concepts and general chit chat is over," said Gurdial Singh Nijar, a Malaysian negotiator and spokesman for the Like Minded Developing Nations bloc, which includes China, India, and many African, South American, Middle Eastern and Asian countries.