Business news briefs: Nurses kept out after strike

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Nurses returned to UPMC Altoona on Wednesday following a one-day strike over broken contract negotiations, but not all were welcomed back. Hospital spokesman David Cuzzolina said 31 nurses were allowed to return while the others were told to wait for a call from their supervisor. "They all still have jobs waiting for them," he said, "but we are returning them in an orderly fashion that may take through the weekend." He said 181 of the hospital's 800 nurses crossed the picket line Tuesday. UPMC Altoona used Pennsylvania-licensed temporary nurses to cover for the striking nurses, a move that was slammed by SEIU Healthcare PA, which represents the nurses.

MSA sales up amid Q4 results

Shares of MSA jumped 7 percent after the Cranberry safety products company reported better than expected fourth-quarter results. Net income totaled $25.4 million, or 67 cents per share, versus earnings of $19.5 million, or 52 cents per share, in the year-ago quarter. Sales rose 3 percent to $291.4 million.

Earnings for all of 2013 fell 3 percent to $88.2 million, or $2.34 per share. Sales were flat at $1.11 billion. In 2012, MSA reported net income of $90.6 million, or $2.42 per share.

Wabtec acquiring London firm

Wabtec Corp., a rail manufacturer based in Wilmerding, said it has a deal to acquire Fandstan Electric Group, a U.K.-based rail and industrial equipment manufacturer, for about $215 million in cash. London-based Fandstan has annual sales of about $235 million. The deal is expected to close in the first quarter. Fandstan Electric employs about 1,000 people.

Amazon plans more hires

Amazon says it is hiring more than 2,500 full-time workers for its order fulfillment centers.

Vehicle problem reports rise

Owners of 3-year-old vehicles are reporting more problems than they did a year ago, according to J.D. Power and Associates' annual survey of vehicle dependability.

Glitch spurs hybrid Prius recall

Toyota said Wednesday it is recalling 1.9 million hybrid Prius cars globally for a software glitch that could cause the vehicle to stall. The recalled vehicles were manufactured between March 2009 and February 2014.

Dr Pepper goes with the flow

Americans are cutting back on both regular soda and diet soda. So Dr Pepper is testing something in between, with natural sweeteners. Dr Pepper Snapple Group said Wednesday that it plans to test versions of its Dr Pepper, 7Up and Canada Dry sodas this year that have about 60 calories a can with only naturally derived sweeteners. That's less than half the 150 calories in a can of regular Dr Pepper.

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