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Jabil to hire 500 at Memphis plant

By Times Staff
Published June 21, 2005

Jabil Circuit is on a hiring spree ... in Memphis. The St. Petersburg electronics manufacturer said Monday it will hire 500 people at its Memphis operation by the end of the year to handle new business. The expansion, which will increase the size of the Memphis site by 50 percent, was spurred by a new contract to make and assemble electronic cash registers and self-serve kiosks for an undisclosed client. Alex Privert, the Memphis operations manager, said new hires are needed to handle electronics system configuration and integration as well as material handling. The hiring represents a reversal of sorts for Jabil, which had cut workers in the United States for years as it outsourced to cheaper-labor sites overseas.

Indicators index dips more than expected

A closely watched gauge of future business activity fell more than expected in May, indicating slower economic growth may lie ahead this year, a private research group said Monday. The New York-based Conference Board reported that its Composite Index of Leading Indicators fell 0.5 percent last month to 114.1. The decline was more than the 0.2 percent drop that analysts had expected. The May decline follows a revised unchanged level in April and a 0.6 percent decline in March.

$852-million gets Heinz sauce brands

H.J. Heinz Co., the nation's largest ketchup maker, agreed Monday to buy the HP Foods and Lea & Perrins sauce divisions from France's Groupe Danone for $852-million. Heinz believes the acquisition will make the company "the sauces leader" in Britain. Danone's sauce brands, marketed primarily in Britain, the United States and Canada, accounted for close to $292-million in revenue last year, Danone said. As part of the deal, Heinz gets condiments including Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce, HP Sauce and Rajah spices and a license to manufacture Danone's Amoy brand of Asian sauces in Europe.

Judge urges deal be made in tobacco case

The judge overseeing the federal trial against cigarette makers urged both sides in a closed-door meeting Monday to consider settling the case. U.S. District Judge Gladys Kessler described the gathering as "a routine, informal discussion with the parties urging them, once again, to consider the advantages of settling this case rather than the risks of litigating it." At least two chief executive officers attended the meeting - Michael Szymanczyk, the head of Philip Morris USA, and Susan Ivey, the head of Reynolds American.

Microsoft unveils local search function

Catching up with rivals Google Inc. and Yahoo Inc., Microsoft Corp. on Monday unveiled an improved search service that delivers results tuned to users' location. MSN Local Search delivers the listings of local sites and a map that includes virtual pushpins indicating each location. It was expected to be available as a "beta" service starting late Monday at

T-bill rates mixed

Interest rates on short-term Treasury bills were mixed in Monday's auction as rates on three-month bills fell while six-month bills rose to the highest level in nearly four years. The Treasury Department auctioned $16-billion in three-month bills at a discount rate of 2.965 percent, down from 2.975 percent last week. Another $14-billion in six-month bills was auctioned at a discount rate of 3.175 percent, up from 3.120 last week.

[Last modified June 21, 2005, 11:11:32]

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