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China Eastern Airlines buying 20 Boeing 777s

From Wire Reports

HONG KONG – China Eastern Airlines Co. is buying 20 Boeing 777 jets worth nearly $6 billion while also selling five Airbus A340s to the U.S. plane-maker because they’re costlier to run, the Shanghai-based airline said Monday.

The airline said it’s selling the Airbus A340-600 airplanes worth $708 million to Boeing because they have high operating costs and “relatively weak route competitiveness.” The Airbus jets are about 8.3 years old, on average, and fly long-haul routes to New York and Los Angeles.

China Eastern said list price of the 777-300ERs is $5.94 billion, but it negotiated a discount.

Boeing said last week the deal needs Chinese government approval.

The new jets will be delivered in stages from 2014 to 2018. The airline will pay for them using working capital, bank loans and other sources of financing. The 777 is a twin-engine plane designed for long trips. It carries 365 passengers up to 7,930 nautical miles.

Boeing spokesman Yukui Wang would not comment on the deal to buy China Eastern’s secondhand Airbus jets. But he said the company has in the past bought jets made by other plane-makers and then sold them to other companies.

Bankruptcy court judge approves Kodak bonuses

ROCHESTER, N.Y. – A U.S. bankruptcy court judge has approved Kodak’s plan to pay up to $13.5 million in bonuses to retain key managers as it reorganizes under bankruptcy protection.

The Rochester-based company said during a court hearing Monday in New York that turnover has become a serious problem.

Judge Allan Gropper approved the plan despite an objection by the U.S. trustee over concerns Kodak hadn’t been clear in guaranteeing the money wouldn’t go to top management insiders like chief executive Antonio Perez. Kodak responded in a court filing that only non-insiders would get the bonuses.

Coca-Cola denies rumors it’s acquiring Monster

Monster Beverage Corp.’s shares soared Monday following a report that Coca-Cola Co. was considering buying the energy-drink maker, but the world’s biggest soft-drink maker later denied the discussions are under way.

The Wall Street Journal cited unnamed people in reporting that Coca-Cola was in talks to buy Monster. If a deal transpired, Monster would be Coca-Cola’s largest brand acquisition ever.

Coca-Cola said late Monday that no such discussion is in process.

Monster declined to discuss the matter, citing company policy.

“At this time, we are not in discussions to acquire the Monster Beverage Corporation. We continue to review the best ways to maximize the value of our relationship,” Coca-Cola said in a statement.

Shares of Monster spiked to a record high of $83.96, which was 27 percent above their previous 52-week trading high of $65.94, reached last week. But they closed down 53 cents at $65.

Shares of Coca-Cola, based in Atlanta, fell 31 cents to close at $76.32.

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