Business news briefs: TreeHouse beats estimates

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TreeHouse beats estimates

TreeHouse Foods Inc., whose portfolio includes a private label soup operation in the former Heinz plant on Pittsburgh's North Side, reported fourth-quarter earnings of 61 cents per share compared to 68 cents during the same period a year earlier. Adjusted for one-time items, quarterly earnings of 98 cents beat analysts' estimates by 7 cents. Net income for the quarter totaled $22.8 million, compared to $25.2 million last year. Net sales rose from $592.8 million to $660.3 million, an increase of 11 percent driven by the acquisitions of Cains Foods and Associated Brands. The Illinois company said the retail grocery environment, which has been weak, is starting to stabilize.

Airport foot traffic down

Passenger traffic at Pittsburgh International Airport fell 2 percent in 2013. A total of 7,854,181 travelers used the Findlay airport last year, compared to 8,011,581 in 2012. It marks the second straight year passenger traffic has declined. The last increase, 1.3 percent, was in 2011 when 8,268,440 people used the airport.

Weather bites into U.S. output

Harsh winter weather led to a steep drop in U.S. factory output in January. Manufacturers made fewer cars and trucks, appliances, furniture and carpeting, as the recent cold spell ended five straight months of increased production The Federal Reserve said factory production plunged 0.8 percent in January. Factory output rose a modest 1.3 percent over the past 12 months. Overall industrial production fell 0.3 percent in January.

NHTSA probes CX-9 brakes

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is investigating problems with the power brakes in the Mazda CX-9 crossover SUV from the 2010 and 2011 model years. The agency has closed an investigation into engine stalling in some Chrysler cars after the company extended the fuel tank warranty. The probe covered nearly 154,000 Chrysler 300, Dodge Charger and Dodge Magnum cars from 2006.

Jos. Bank strikes buy deal

Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc. is buying the parent company of Eddie Bauer in a cash-and-stock deal valued at $825 million. The deal comes as Jos. A. Bank is being pursued by rival Men's Wearhouse Inc. Jos. A. Bank said Friday it struck a deal with Everest Topco LLC.

Dell Fastener, Ohio firm merge

Rockwood Equity Partners said Dell Fastener Corp. of Bridgeville has merged with one of its portfolio companies, AFC Industries of Fairfield, Ohio. Dell employs 33 and distributes fasteners and provides logistics services while AHC distributes fasteners and other industrial items. Terms were not disclosed.

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