Thursday, September 25, 2003

Business digest

From staff/wire reports

Chiquita lauded for benefits procedure

Chiquita Brands International Inc. has won an award from the Profit Sharing/401(k) Council of America for communication and investment education in its employee retirement plans.

Cincinnati-based Chiquita won second place in the Introduction to Plan Design or Administrative Change category, with fewer than 10,000 participants.

PSCA officials said that even during a weak economy, employers need to educate employees on the benefit of company-sponsored retirement plans.

Great American raises $59.7M

Great American Financial Resources Inc. has completed a stock rights offering, allowing the Cincinnati-based insurance company to raise about $59.7 million.

The parent of Great American Life Insurance Co. raised the cash by selling almost 4.3 million shares to existing shareholders for $14 a share in a rights offering.

The company plans to use the process to pay off existing debt and contribute additional capital to its insurance operations.

Bankrupt airline reports progress

CHICAGO - United Airlines narrowed its net loss in August and posted a $105 million operating profit in what its chief financial officer called a "very encouraging month" in its effort to get out of bankruptcy.

Despite the progress, the $46 million net loss put the carrier on track for a 13th consecutive quarterly deficit - including three since it filed for Chapter 11 last December.

The nation's No. 2 airline had lost $112 million in July after being a whopping $1.96 billion in the red for the first half of 2003.

Gilbert gets 2nd term as SAG president

LOS ANGELES - Melissa Gilbert Tuesday was re-elected president of the Screen Actors Guild, her second term.

Gilbert received 15,670 votes out of 31,640 cast, winning by 2,428 votes over SAG treasurer Kent McCord. Also running was guild activist Gordon Drake.

Gilbert defeated actress Valerie Harper in 2001, but a second vote was called after questions arose over the handling of ballots. Gilbert won the second vote in March 2002.

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