Business Briefing


UPS raises forecast as profit climbs

In a good sign for the U.S. economy, shipping giant United Parcel Service Inc. posted a 33% increase in first-quarter earnings per share.

The company, based in Atlanta, also raised its guidance for the year, saying it expects 2010 earnings per share to climb 32% to 43%.


Revenue in the quarter increased 7%.

The results were announced nearly two weeks early. UPS now expects full-year adjusted earnings per share of $3.05 to $3.30, up from the $2.70 to $3.05 it projected in February.

Yum Brands sees net income rise

Yum Brands Inc., the owner of Taco Bell and other restaurant chains, said first-quarter profit rose 11%, helped by sales growth in China and at U.S. Pizza Huts after January’s $10 pizza promotion.


Net income increased to $241 million, or 50 cents a share, from $218 million, or 46 cents, a year earlier, Louisville, Ky.-based Yum said. Excluding some items, profit beat by 6 cents the average of analysts’ estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

Revenue climbed 6% to $2.35 billion.


Simon bids anew for rival General


Simon Property Group Inc. made a new offer for rival General Growth Properties Inc., pledging to invest $2.5 billion in a reorganization and match the terms of a bankruptcy exit plan led by Brookfield Asset Management Inc.

The proposal includes a $1-billion co-investment commitment by hedge fund Paulson & Co., Indianapolis-based Simon said.

General Growth operates the Glendale Galleria and other malls.



IPad sales delay debut overseas

U.S. sales of the iPad have been so brisk that Apple Inc. is delaying the tablet computer’s overseas debut a second time.

Apple said it will now start taking orders for the iPad from international buyers on May 10. In January, it said the iPad would be sold worldwide in late March.



BofA names outsider CFO

Bank of America Corp. named an outsider, former Northrop Grumman Corp. executive Charles H. Noski, as its chief financial officer.

Bank of America was expected to bring in leaders from outside as it tries to improve relations with regulators, handle investigations into the bank’s purchase of Merrill Lynch and restore shareholder morale.



DirecTV drops suit against Dish

El Segundo-based DirecTV, the largest U.S. satellite-television provider, dropped a lawsuit in which it accused rival Dish Network Corp. of running a false advertising campaign on nationwide TV, according to a court filing.

DirecTV sued Englewood, Colo.-based Dish in February, seeking to halt the advertisements that asserted Dish charges $24 less a month for the same services as DirecTV. A federal judge in New York denied DirecTV’s bid to block the ads immediately.

-- times wire reports