Business memo 12/23/02

Monday, December 23, 2002

Transportation available to and from Nestle sites

New transportation routes are now available to and from both work sites at the Golden Products Division of Nestle Purina at Bloomfield, Mo., and IXL of Bernie, Mo. The Workforce Investment Board of Southeast Missouri is now providing transportation from homes of workers to the division for the 7 a.m. and 3 p.m. shift, the board announced last week.

A van will pick workers up at their homes and take them to work and return them home after their shift is finished. This transportation is being offered in Dexter, Mo., Advance, Mo., and Sikeston, Mo.

Anyone interested in this transportation should call Sandy Harty at Stoddard County Transportation at (573) 624-8624, Nola Thomposon with the Division of Workforce Development at (573) 472-5250 or Pam Tuttle with the board at (800) 451-0990, extension 20.

The second route is from Sikeston to IXL in Bernie. Transportation is for the 8:30 p.m. to 7 a.m. shift. Workers will be picked up at Wal-Mart in Sikeston at 7:45 p.m. Workers interested in this transportation should contact Sherry with Scott County Transit at (573) 472-3030 or at the above numbers.

Economy closing year as it began -- poorly

WASHINGTON -- The economy is closing out the year much as it began: The housing industry posted another strong construction gain in November while U.S. factories struggled to show a tiny increase after three months of weakness.

But another report says inflation's no-show may allow the Federal Reserve, whose interest rate cuts have fueled both the housing and auto booms, to cut rates further. Consumer prices rose just 0.1 percent last month as a big drop in energy costs helped offset a sharp rise in medical costs.

The flurry of reports suggested that the economy may be finding its way through what Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan has termed a soft patch.

Corporation buying Calvin Klein for $430 million

NEW YORK -- Phillips-Van Heusen Corp. said Tuesday that it is buying Calvin Klein Inc. in a cash and stock deal worth more than $430 million.

The value of the transaction includes $400 million in cash, approximately $30 million in PVH stock as well as warrants and an ongoing financial incentive for Mr. Klein based on future sales of the Calvin Klein brand.

Apax Partners, a leading private equity firm, will provide a major part of the financing for the transaction, which is subject to normal regulatory review and is expected to close within 60 days.

-- From staff, wire reports

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