Business Briefs: Severstal finalizes sale of Miss., Mich. plants

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Severstal finalizes sale of Miss., Mich. plants

Russian steel producer OAO Severstal is selling its Columbus, Miss., plant to Fort Wayne, Ind.-based Steel Dynamics for $1.6 billion and its Dearborn, Mich., plant to AK Steel of West Chester, Ohio, for $700 million. The Mississippi plant opened in 2007 and can produce 3.4 million tons annually. Its customers include the automotive and energy markets. The Dearborn plant has an annual capacity of 2.5 million tons and serves the automotive, construction and appliance markets. The transactions are expected to be completed by the end of the year.

Howard Hanna CEO now Children’s board chair

Mary Jo Dively has stepped down as chair of the Children’s Hospital Board of Trustees after 15 years and Howard “Hoddy” Hanna, who has served as board chair of the hospital’s foundation since 2009, will replace her. Mr. Hanna is CEO of Howard Hanna Real Estate Services. Replacing Mr. Hanna as foundation board chair is Jay W. Cleveland Jr., a longtime foundation board member. According to a release from the hospital, Mrs. Dively will remain an active member of both the hospital and foundation boards of trustees.

Verizon moves to equalize upload, download speeds

Verizon announced it will upgrade customers’ uploads speeds to make them equal to download speeds at no cost to its customers. A news release said the upgrades will double the level of upload activity on Verizon’‍s FIOS network by late 2016. Customers who are part of the My Rewards loyalty program will receive upgrades first, and interested customers can sign up at​home/​MLP/​myrewards.html.

Respironics parent reports Q2 disappointment

Royal Philips, parent of Murrysville-based Respironics, has reported second-quarter sales dropped 4 percent compared to a year ago. The Dutch company’s earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization were $561 million, compared with $813 million for the same period in 2013.

South Side-based bank reveals earnings increase

United-American Savings Bank, South Side, reported second-quarter earnings of $146,000, or 48 cents per share, up from $134,000, or 45 cents, in the same three months last year as revenue rose and the provision for loan losses fell.

Online furniture retailers sued by state AG’s office

The Pennsylvania Attorney General’s office has sued two Philadelphia-based online furniture retailers for allegedly taking money from consumers but failing to fill their orders. Consumers who believe they were harmed by the companies, which operated under the names Furniture XO and Furniture PM, should contact the AG’‍s Bureau of Consumer Protection at 1-800-441-2555 or file a complaint online at

Region’s downward trend for homes persists in June

The median price of a home in metropolitan Pittsburgh fell 5.1 percent to $145,800 in June, down from $148,000 a year ago, marking the continuation of a downward trend in the region’s home prices first noted in October 2013, according to RealSTATs, a South Side-based real estate information service. The region’‍s median home price was down 2.2 percent in May and down 2.9 percent in April from the previous year.

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