Business news briefs: Weirton, AHN announce pact

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Weirton, AHN announce pact

Weirton Medical Center and Pittsburgh's Allegheny Health Network announced a partnership to provide cardiac and heart surgery services to patients in West Virginia. Vardhan Reddy, a cardiac surgeon, will oversee the partnership. Under the agreement, patients at Weirton Medical will have access to care at AHN's cardiovascular institute.

Ansys-Reaction deal develops

Southpointe-based engineering simulation company Ansys has reached a definitive merger agreement with San Diego-based chemistry simulation software company Reaction Design. The terms of the deal -- which is expected to close in January -- were not disclosed, and there is no word whether Reaction's 26 employees will head to Pennsylvania. Ansys shares closed at $85.96 Wednesday, up 38 cents.

Cancer drug licensing pact

Duquesne University and Flag Therapeutics Inc. of Raleigh, N.C., have agreed to a worldwide licensing agreement for two classes of small molecule, water-soluble cancer drugs. According to a statement, the two compounds will be the first to combine the dual action of two major classes of cancer drugs into a single molecule.

American Eagle set to expand

South Side teen clothing retailer American Eagle Outfitters Inc. has reached licensing deals to allow store openings in several new countries starting next summer. Grupo David Enterprises has a multistore deal to take the brand into Venezuela, the Caribbean and Central America. Grupo Comercializadoras will put American Eagle stores in Colombia, while Pacifica Lifestyle Co. sets up shops in Thailand. American Eagle, which has been focusing on international expansion, expects to add about 40 additional licensed stores next year.

Mylan completes acquisition

Mylan Inc. said Wednesday that it had completed the previously announced acquisition of the Agila Specialties generic injectable drug unit from Strides Arcolab Ltd. in India. Separately, Mylan said its annual shareholders meeting next year was set for April 11.

Area Goodwill receives grant

The UPS Foundation gave a $25,000 grant to Goodwill of Southwestern Pennsylvania for furnishings and materials needed to finish the interior of Goodwill's greenhouse training facility in Lawrenceville.

OPEC approves output ceiling

OPEC, content with current oil price levels, agreed Wednesday at its meeting in Vienna to keep the group's crude output ceiling unchanged at least until June even as Libya, Iran and Iraq plan to increase exports in coming months. The 12-nation Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries supplies about 40 percent of the world's oil.

Fuel activity narrows trade gap

The U.S. trade gap narrowed to $40.6 billion in October, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. Exports rose 1.8 percent to a record $192.7 billion, buoyed by a 6 percent gain in petroleum exports. Imports rose 0.4 percent to $233.3 billion, the highest since March 2012. Oil imports rose 1.5 percent.

Service sector index falls

The Institute for Supply Management said Wednesday its service-sector index fell to 53.9 in November. Eleven of the 17 industries tracked by the survey expanded last month, including transportation and warehousing, retail, and finance. Six contracted, including mining, restaurants and hotels and construction.

Noteworthy home sale growth

Sales of new homes grew 25.4 percent in October to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 444,000, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. That was the largest monthly percentage increase since May 1980. Sales had slowed over the summer after mortgage rates rose sharply and a limited number of homes for sale boosted prices. New-homes sales have risen 21.6 percent higher for the 12 months ending in October. Still, the pace remains well below the 700,000 consistent with a healthy market.

Executive optimism inches up

A survey of chief executives at the 200 largest U.S. companies shows a growing number are slightly more optimistic about the economy's prospects for the next six months and 34 percent expect to boost hiring. The Business Roundtable said Wednesday that its index measuring CEO outlook rose to 84.5 in the October-December quarter. That's up from 79.1 in the July-September quarter.


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