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Business in brief: Boeing may delay 787’s debut

Sat., March 8, 2008, midnight

Supply chain troubles and production problems may force Boeing Co. to further delay the first flight of its new 787 jetliner, some analysts said Friday.

Boeing said it’s evaluating the schedule, but its goal is still to power up the plane in early April and send it on its first flight by the end of June.

In January, the aircraft maker announced a third major delay in the 787 program, pushing the delivery date for the first plane into early 2009 and saying it would assess its timeline for getting the aircraft off the ground.

Boeing isn’t expected to announce the outcome of its review until the end of the month.


CEOs defend pay in hearing on Hill

Three corporate executives called in for a shaming by Democratic lawmakers Friday defended raking in hundreds of millions of dollars despite contributing to the subprime mortgage crisis that has their companies reeling from losses and the nation on the edge of recession.

The CEOs testifying before the committee were Angelo Mozilo of Countrywide Financial Corp.; Stanley O’Neal, formerly of Merrill Lynch & Co; and Charles Prince, formerly of Citigroup Inc. They defended their pay as appropriate, and Republicans on the committee generally agreed.

“There’s a complete disconnect with reality,” said Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

The hearing was the second held by Waxman on the issue of executive pay, which Forbes magazine said averaged $15.2 million for the CEOs in the largest 500 U.S. companies in 2006, an increase of 38 percent in one year.


Ralph Lauren loses trademark battle

Polo Ralph Lauren has lost its bid to prevent the United States Polo Association and its merchandising partner, Jordache Ltd., from using logos that resemble its famous trademark of a horseman whacking a ball.

The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals this week refused to overturn a jury’s 2005 finding that three out of four logos used by the Polo Association didn’t infringe on Ralph Lauren’s mark.

The association logos feature two polo players on horseback, not one.

They also have the lettering “USPA” beneath them.

A jury ruled that clothing buyers were unlikely to be confused into thinking they were buying Ralph Lauren shirts.

The polo player symbol has appeared on Ralph Lauren clothing since 1972.

The USPA was founded in 1890 and is the governing body for the sport in the United States. Jordache licensed the rights to USPA-branded clothing in 1998.


United raises fuel surcharge

United Airlines is raising its fuel surcharge again in the latest effort in the industry to try to limit losses from soaring jet fuel prices.

United spokeswoman Robin Urbanski says the nation’s No. 2 carrier increased its domestic fuel surcharge Friday morning by $6 to $10 per round trip.

That effectively amounts to a fare increase.

There was no immediate word whether other carriers were following suit.

Some previous attempts in the industry to raise the fuel surcharge have failed after not every carrier would go along.

From wire reports


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