Business news briefs: National, local gas prices fall despite storm tumult
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The price of gasoline in Pittsburgh fell 3.1 cents per gallon this week, with the average cost for a gallon of regular unleaded hitting $3.69, according to GasBuddy.com. The national average fell 5.6 cents to hit $3.51 per gallon. Refinery disruptions because of Hurricane Sandy over the past week were concentrated in the Northeast, GasBuddy analysts said, and didn't affect energy infrastructure located in the Gulf Coast. Analysts also said they expect gas prices to continue to fall through Thanksgiving.
The Bayer USA Foundation is donating $150,000 to assist Hurricane Sandy relief efforts. The foundation allocated $75,000 to the American Red Cross and $75,000 to Save the Children. Bayer Corp., with headquarters operations in Robinson, said it employs about 7,000 in states impacted by the storm.
Saxonburg laser and infrared optics maker II-VI Inc. named Carl J. Johnson as chairman of the board of directors at its annual meeting Friday. Shareholders also approved the company's executive compensation plan.
Service industries in the U.S. kept growing in October, helped by consumer spending gains that are helping bolster the expansion. The Institute for Supply Management's nonmanufacturing index declined to 54.2 last month from 55.1 in September, the Tempe, Ariz.-based group said Monday. Readings above 50 signal expansion.
Apple Inc. said it sold 3 million units of its iPad mini and fourth-generation iPad during the debut weekend, a sign that the new devices can help the company withstand accelerating competition in the tablet market. Cupertino, Calif.-based Apple began selling the 7.9-inch tablet worldwide Nov. 2, ramping up an effort to fend off competition. The iPad mini costs $329 to $529 for the Wi-Fi model, and as much as $659 for models that connect to data networks.
Netflix Inc. is moving to protect itself against hostile takeovers, less than a week after activist investor Carl Icahn disclosed a stake of nearly 10 percent in the online video company. The Los Gatos, Calif.-company said Monday that it has adopted a shareholder rights plan, also known as a poison pill. Such a plan is designed to make it difficult or even impossible for someone to take over the company without an agreement from the board. When the provision is triggered, additional shares flood the market and make it prohibitively expensive for a takeover. Netflix shares rose 1.74 percent, or $1.34, to $78.24 in trading. The stock peaked at close to $305 nearly 16 months ago.
• Universal Stainless & Alloy Products corrected its previously reported third-quarter results, lowering its earnings after discovering an incorrect customer invoice. The Bridgeville special metals producer said it earned $2.7 million, or 38 cents per share, on sales of $61.4 million. It had previously reported net income of $3.3 million, or 45 cents per share, on sales of $62.3 million.
First Published November 6, 2012 12:00 am