Business briefs: Canadian firm to buy Heinz plant

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A Canadian co-packer has agreed to buy an H.J. Heinz Co. plant in Leamington, Ontario, a move that could save 250 jobs. Heinz signed a letter of intent to sell the plant to Highbury Canco Corp., which will then make products for the Pittsburgh food company. Terms of the deal were not announced. The 740-employee plant had been notified last year that it, along with two other North American facilities, would be closed as new ownership of Heinz looked for ways to streamline production and cut costs.

Deal made for investment firm

First Commonwealth Financial Advisors, an investment advisory firm and subsidiary of Indiana, Pa.-based First Commonwealth Financial Corp., agreed to be acquired by New York-based Cantor Fitzgerald Wealth Partners. Terms weren't disclosed. First Commonwealth said the sale would allow it to focus on its core community banking business, trust, insurance, brokerage and investment management efforts. The financial advisory offices will continue to be led by Richard R. Applegate.

ID theft remains top fraud complaint

For the 14th consecutive year, identity theft led the Federal Trade Commission's top 10 list of consumer fraud complaints in 2013. The agency logged 290,056 ID theft complaints last year, followed by 204,644 complaints about debt collectors, and 152,707 involving banks and lenders. For tips on preventing ID theft and mitigating the damage, visit FTC.gov/idtheft.

Court rules in favor of candy makers

Call it a sweet victory for Big Chocolate. A federal judge ruled Wednesday in favor of the nation's largest candy makers in a price-fixing lawsuit filed by 22 supermarket and drug store chains. U.S. District Judge Christopher C. Conner found that there was no evidence that Hershey Co., Mars Inc., and Nestle U.S.A. colluded to boost prices on candy bars. The case, heard in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, consolidated 91 cases brought in multiple federal jurisdictions.

Orders for durable goods fall 1%

The Commerce Department said Thursday that orders for durable goods fell a seasonally adjusted 1 percent in January from December. Much of the decline was driven by a 20.2 percent drop in demand for commercial aircraft, a volatile month-to-month category. More encouragingly, orders rose 1.7 percent in a closely watched category, known as core capital goods, which excludes volatile transportation and defense orders. This category had dropped 1.8 percent in December.

Also in business ...

Germany's Volkswagen AG says it's recalling some 600,000 Caddy delivery vehicles worldwide to repair a problem with their rear doors. The Caddy is not sold in North America.


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