Roundup: Toyota profit triples; Apple may switch chips; more

| Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2012, 12:01 a.m.

Toyota quarterly profit triples, raises forecast

Toyota's quarterly profit tripled, driven by a recovery from natural disasters, and the company raised its full-year earnings forecast Monday despite a sales slump in China. Toyota Motor Corp., on track to regain the crown of world's No. 1 automaker this year, reported a July-September net profit of $3.2 billion compared with a $1 billion profit a year earlier. The result was better than the $3 billion quarterly profit forecast by analysts surveyed by FactSet. Japan's top automaker raised its profit forecast for the full fiscal year through March to $9.8 billion from $9.5 billion.

Apple exploring switch from Intel chips for Mac PCs

Apple Inc. is exploring ways to replace Intel Corp. processors in its Mac personal computers with a version of the chip technology it uses in the iPhone and iPad, according to people familiar with the company's research. Apple engineers have grown confident that the chip designs used for its mobile devices will one day be powerful enough to run its desktops and laptops. Apple began using Intel chips for Macs in 2005. While Apple is committed to Intel in computers and is unlikely to switch in the next few years, some engineers say a shift to its own designs is inevitable as the features of mobile devices and PCs become more similar.

Consol Energy offers buyouts to 213 salaried employees

Consol Energy Inc. said Monday it offered voluntary buyouts to 213 salaried employees who have 30 or more years of service with the coal and natural gas producer. The figure represents 2.3 percent of the Cecil-based company's workforce, spokeswoman Lynn Seay said. The voluntary separation offer doesn't include employees at coal mines and the Fairmont Supply business. No other details were available. Consol reported an $11 million loss for the July through September quarter due to coal mines being idled in light of a weaker market, plus conveyor belt problems at two Greene County mines.

Universal Stainless profit reduced on corrected results

Universal Stainless & Alloy Products Inc. corrected its third-quarter results on Monday, saying an incorrect customer invoice was discovered and a credit memo has been issued. Previously reported sales for the third quarter were cut by $900,000 to $61.4 million. With the fix, the Bridgeville-based stainless steel maker said it earned a profit of $2.75 million, or 38 cents a share, for the three months ended Sept. 30. That's a change from $3.27 million, or 45 cents.

SBA official to speak on women-owned businesses

Small Business Administration Associate Administrator Ana Recio Harvey will be the keynote speaker at “Women Veterans Marching Forward: Call to Entrepreneurship,” from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Friday in the Hilton Garden Inn, Canonsburg. Seton Hill University's E-Magnify Women's Business Center is among the sponsors. Harvey oversees SBA's efforts to promote growth of women-owned businesses through programs that provide business training and counseling, access to credit and capital and multiple business and networking opportunities. For details, or to register, visit or call 724-830-4614.

GM gets new credit lines totaling $11B from 35 sources

General Motors says it has received $11 billion in credit lines from 35 financial institutions in 14 countries. They include a $5.5 billion, three-year credit facility and another $5.5 billion line for five years. They replace GM's $5 billion credit line that was to expire in 2015. Chief Financial Officer Dan Ammann said in a statement Monday that GM will use the credit as a source of backup liquidity. The company said last week that it ended the third quarter with $31.6 billion in cash.

Other business news

• The typical corporate pension in the United States was 73.6 percent funded through October, Bank of New York Mellon said on Monday. Falling interest rates and a pause in the rally of U.S. stocks led to a 1.7 percentage-point decline in the funded status, compared with the same time last year. Assets for the typical plan fell 0.7 percent and liabilities increased 1.1 percent, BNY Mellon said.

• Sheetz stores are selling dog tag-inspired car magnets to benefit the Iraq Afghanistan Veterans of America to help veterans of those wars as they return home. The magnets sell for $1 in all 430 convenience stores, with proceeds going to the nonprofit IAVA for its programs that support health, education, employment and community. Magnets will be available through Nov. 30.

• Allegheny General Hospital received the National Research Corp.'s Consumer Choice Award for Western Pennsylvania, West Penn Allegheny Health System said. The North Side hospital won the award based on a survey of about 250,000 households. Allegheny General was one of about 300 hospitals cited for excellence in best overall quality, best doctors, best nurses and best image/reputation.

• Ralph Martin, CEO of Trib Total Media, and Michael Smith, CEO of Goodwill of Southwestern Pennsylvania, were named to the board of trustees of Robert Morris University. A 38-member board oversees the 5,000-student private university in Moon.

— Staff and wire reports

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