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Business in brief: United Airlines to cut 950 pilot jobs

United Airlines says it will eliminate about 950 pilot jobs beginning this summer in addition to an already announced plan to cut 1,600 salaried positions and reduce its fleet.

United told its pilots union about the cuts Monday. The Chicago-based carrier says it’s still working with the unions on the reductions.

Messages left for the Air Line Pilots Association were not immediately returned.


Walgreen Co. posts profit increase

Drugstore chain Walgreen Co. said Monday its fiscal third-quarter profit rose 2 percent as it focused on cost control and maintained a rapid expansion pace in a difficult retail environment.

Despite the modest gain, the results fell slightly short of Wall Street’s expectations, and Walgreen shares slipped back after initially climbing nearly 3 percent. Overall, however, analysts said the Deerfield, Ill.-based company’s cost discipline and continued advances in a weak economy shows it has turned a corner.


GM to raise prices on 2009 vehicles

General Motors Corp. told dealers Monday it plans to raise prices on 2009 models by an average of 3.5 percent despite a tough market that is forcing the automaker to cut production and discount its 2008 models.

Company officials said that the increases will allow GM to recover only part of the rising cost of steel and other commodities and the cost of safety and other features on the new models. The increases will amount to about $1,000 per vehicle.

GM already had increased the prices of its 2008 model year vehicles twice because of rising commodity costs.


Agricultural giant gets bigger

Two of America’s oldest agricultural companies laid the foundation for a new $30 billion-a-year ag and food colossus Monday with the announcement that Bunge Ltd. is buying Corn Products International Inc. in a $4.4 billion stock deal.

The combination will vault White Plains, N.Y.-based Bunge into the Fortune 100 by adding Corn Products’ sweeteners, starches and other ingredients to its portfolio of agribusiness, fertilizer, edible oil and milling products.

From wire reports


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