FedEx 4Q profit drops as priority services lag
FedEx Corp.'s fourth-quarter profit fell 45 percent as international customers traded down to less-expensive delivery options. The world's second-largest package delivery company said it earned $303 million, or 95 cents per share, in the quarter ended May 31. That's down from $550 million, or $1.73 per share, a year ago. Excluding restructuring costs and an aircraft write-down, it would have earned $2.13 per share, which beat analysts' forecast of $1.96 per share. Fourth-quarter revenue rose 4 percent to $11.44 billion. The FedEx Ground unit, based in Moon, saw posted a 12 percent revenue increase to $2.78 billion. Its average daily volume grew 10 percent and revenue per package rose 2 percent.
Men's Wearhouse ousts founder, pitchman Zimmer
Men's Wearhouse has fired the face of the company and its executive chairman, George Zimmer, who appeared in many of its TV commercials with the slogan "You're going to like the way you look. I guarantee it." In a statement issued to CNBC, Mr. Zimmer said that over the past several months he and the board of the Fremont, Calif.-based company disagreed about the company's direction and that the board "inappropriately has chosen to silence my concerns," by firing him.
Porsche tops J.D. Power survey of vehicle quality
Porsche is the top performer in an annual survey of new vehicle quality. J.D. Power questioned more than 83,000 U.S. car owners about problems with their 2013 vehicles in the first 90 days of ownership. In the results released Wednesday, Porsche, GMC, Lexus, Infiniti and Chevrolet owners reported the fewest problems. The worst performing brands were Scion, Fiat, Mitsubishi, Nissan and Mini. The top complaints this year involved voice recognition systems that didn't understand commands and Bluetooth systems that didn't connect to drivers' phones. Wind noise was also a big complaint.
Currency factors weigh on retailer H&M's Q2 profit
Swedish fashion retailer Hennes & Mauritz AB on Wednesday said profits fell by 11 percent in the second quarter due to the strong Swedish krona and increased markdowns as it tried to shift its products. The company said net profit for the March-May period dropped to 4.66 billion kronor ($720 million) from 5.22 billion a year earlier. Sales slipped marginally. H&M CEO Karl-Johan Persson said overall revenue suffered due to the "continued challenging situation for the fashion retail industry" and bad weather in many of big markets. H&M opened nearly 100 new stores in the quarter, including its first in South America in Santiago de Chile.
Florida company buys Hyatt Place on North Shore
Florida-based Chatham Lodging Trust has purchased the 178-room Hyatt Place Hotel on the North Shore from Columbus, Ohio-based developer Continental Real Estate Cos. for $40 million. The hotel real estate investment trust, headquartered in Palm Beach, announced the acquisition Wednesday. The Hyatt is the third building to sell on the North Shore in the last year, following the Del Monte and Equitable office buildings. It will be the first Hyatt branded hotel in the Chatham portfolio.
UK banking commission urges better standards
British bankers could soon be facing harsher penalties for behaving badly. After a year which has seen major scandals involving rate-rigging, money-laundering and rogue-trading rock the UK's financial industry, an influential parliamentary committee recommended Wednesday that senior bankers should be held more accountable for their bank's actions. One measure, it said, should be a new criminal offense of "reckless misconduct" -- one that could carry a prison sentence.
Designers Dolce, Gabbana sentenced for tax evasion
A Milan court convicted the fashion designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana of tax evasion. They were found guilty of failing to declare 200 million euros ($268 million) through a Luxembourg company to authorities and given a one year and eight months suspended jail sentence. They were ordered to pay a penalty of 500,000 euros (about $670,000) to tax authorities. The designers have denied the charges.