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JEEP WORKERS APPROVE STRIKE: Workers at the Jeep plant that builds the strong-selling Liberty voted overwhelmingly Tuesday to give the United Auto Workers authority to call a strike. About 88 percent of the workers who voted were in favor of the strike authorization, said Nick Vuich, UAW Local 12 chairman at the Toledo, Ohio, plant. The union cautioned however that it was unlikely there would a walkout soon. Workers are upset that they are working long hours when hundreds of others are laid off. About 1,720 of 5,650 workers were laid off from the plant this summer after the automaker stopped making the Cherokee and slowed down Wrangler production.

CITIGROUP DETAILS MEXICO CUTS: Citigroup Inc. said it plans to cut 7,800 jobs to reduce costs after its $12.5-billion purchase of Mexico's Grupo Financiero Banamex SA. The cuts, coming mainly in Mexico, will cost $145-million in severance, which reduced the company's profit in the third quarter, Citigroup said in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Last month, Banamex said about 2,700 employees would be cut. Citigroup now expects to eliminate about 3,600 Banamex jobs, and 4,200 Citigroup positions.

MEDIA CHAIN TIGHTENS BELT: Tribune Co. announced new cost-cutting measures including 5 percent pay cuts for senior managers, including chairman and chief executive John Madigan, and a wage freeze for nonunion employees. The publisher of the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times also said hiring will be limited to "critical functions," corporate expenses will be further reduced and all the company's business units will take additional cost-saving measures. Tribune said it was taking steps to reduce staff through attrition to avoid further layoffs. The media company cut 1,700 jobs, or up to 7 percent of its work force, in the second and third quarters through layoffs and voluntary retirements. The media giant blamed falling advertising revenue for the move. Tribune shares rose 48 cents to $35.81.

TREASURY AUCTION: Interest rates on four-week Treasury bills fell in Thursday's auction. The Treasury sold $19-billion of the bills at a discount rate of 1.97 percent. The rate was the lowest since the government started selling the four-week bills July 31.

Earnings Hewlett-Packard Co.

Earnings for the three months ended Oct. 31 fell sharply from a year ago, but the Palo Alto, Calif., tech giant easily beat Wall Street expectations once one-time gains and losses were excluded.

4th Qtr Year Ago

Revenue $10.9-bil $13.3-bil

Net Income $97-mil $922-mil

Per Share 5 cents 47 cents

Year Year Ago

Revenue $45.2-bil $48.8-bil

Net Income $408-mil $3.7-bil

Per Share 21 cents $1.80

Federated Department Stores Inc.

The Cincinnati parent of Burdines, Macy's and other department store chains reported a 10 percent drop in sales for the three months ended Nov. 3. Although results beat Wall Street's lowered expectations once one-time items were excluded, earnings on that basis fell 38 percent from a year ago.

3rdQtr Year Ago

Revenue $3.78-bil $4.20-bil

Net Income $3-mil -$668-mil

Per Share 2 cents -$3.32

Tropical Sportswear

Int'l Corp.

The Tampa sportswear manufacturer said the slumping economy hurt both sales and profits last quarter. Sales were down 14 percent and net income 48 percent for the fiscal fourth quarter ended Sept. 29, compared with the same period a year ago. The profit picture would have been even worse had the results not included a gain of $800,000 related to the recent acquisition of Duck Head Apparel Co. Tropical president Christopher Munday said the company has adjusted inventories and production and expects results for the current quarter to be similar to those for the same period a year ago. The company also announced the addition of three board members: Christopher Munday, Martin Pitts and Eloy Vallina Garza.

4thQtr Year Ago

Revenue $107-mil $124-mil

Net Income $2-mil $4-mil

Per Share 27 cents 54 cents

Year Year Ago

Revenue $436-mil $473-mil

Net Income $11-mil $18-mil

Per Share $1.45 $2.27

Davel Communications Inc.

The troubled Tampa pay phone company narrowed its losses for the quarter ended Sept. 30. Davel president Bruce Renard said the company is in discussions with lenders regarding missed debt payments of $2.2-million and $3.3-million in July and October, respectively. The company said it has extended until Nov. 30 a letter of intent to merge with PhoneTel Technologies Inc. of Cleveland.

Davel also said it expects to save about $2.2-million annually after recent job cuts and office closures.

3rdQtr Year Ago

Revenue $23.3-mil $32.1-mil

Net Income -$10.3-mil -$16.9-mil

Per Share -92 cents -$1.51

Insurance Management Solutions Group Inc.

A jump in outsourcing service revenue in the quarter ended Sept. 30 helped the St. Petersburg company reverse a loss from the year-ago period.

3rdQtr Year Ago

Revenue $24.8-mil $16.2-mil

Net Incom e$1.78-mil -$556,543

Per Share 14 cents -4 cents

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