Business Briefs: Retailers ready for holidays

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Retailers ready for holidays

Ross Park Mall and South Hills Village, both owned by Simon Properties Group, plan to open at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving, joining a string of retail operations starting earlier on the holiday. Among the chains opening Nov. 28 are Kmart at 6 a.m., Toys R Us at 5 p.m. and Best Buy at 6 p.m. A big group of stores will open at 8 p.m., including Target, Sears, J.C. Penney, Macy's and Kohl's. Monroeville Mall's website indicates it also will open at 8 p.m. this year, and Grove City Premium Outlets said many stores there will open at 8 p.m. The Mall at Robinson will open at midnight.

Goodwill asks for donations

Goodwill of Southwestern Pennsylvania, a nonprofit, has its own Black Friday promotion: Shoppers at Goodwill stores who donate canned goods for food banks anytime during November will receive a discount coupon for purchases made on Nov. 29. The canned goods will go to the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank and other regional food banks.

Matthews' profits up

North Shore-based Matthews International Corp. reported fourth quarter net income of $14.8 million, 52 cents per share, compared to net income of $12.2 million, or 47 cents per share, for the fourth quarter last year. Analysts had expected the company to earn 75 cents per share. Net income for the year ended Sept. 30 was $54.7 million, or $1.98 per share, compared to $55.2 million, or $1.98 per share, last year. Revenue for the year was $985 million compared to revenue of $900 million in 2012.

Boeing battles with union

Boeing Co. is threatening to move assembly of the upgraded 777X jet away from the Seattle area, its commercial production hub for almost a century, after union members rejected a labor agreement that froze pensions. An eight-year contract extension that would have kept work on the 777X in Washington state's Puget Sound region failed with 67 percent of Machinists voting against the deal.

U.S. trade deficit increases

The U.S. trade deficit widened in September as imports increased to the highest level in 10 months. The deficit increased to $41.8 billion, up 8 percent from August, the Commerce Department said Thursday. Exports dipped 0.2 percent to $188.9 billion while imports rose 1.2 percent to $230.7 billion.

Brazil company looks to W.Va.

Brazilian engineering and construction firm Odebrecht is exploring a site in Wood County, W.Va., for a petrochemical complex that would include an ethane cracker, West Virginia's government announced Thursday. The plant, if built, would be operated by Braskem, also of Brazil.

Pa. law firm expands in Calif.

Philadelphia-based law firm Pepper Hamilton LLP, which has an office in Downtown Pittsburgh, is opening a Silicon Valley office to house its intellectual property practice. The Redwood City-based office will be the Pepper Hamilton's third in California.

U.S. worker productivity on an uptick

The Labor Department said Thursday that worker productivity increased at a 1.9 percent annual rate in the third quarter. Productivity growth is flat over the past year because the gains from the past six months have been offset by declines in previous six months.

Lockheed Martin slashing jobs

Lockheed Martin is cutting 4,000 jobs, about 3.5 percent of its workforce. "In the face of government budget cuts and an increasingly complex global security landscape, these actions are necessary for the future of our business," CEO Marilyn Hewson said Thursday in a statement. Lockheed Martin's plant in nearby Akron, Ohio, is among those slated to close.

Also in business...

The Pittsburgh-Allegheny County Sports & Exhibition Authority will spend $1.2 million to replace worn and stained 10- to 12-year-old carpet in the ballroom and the public areas of the David L. Lawrence Convention Center.

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