Archive for October, 2011

White passes silver as most popular car color

Wednesday, October 5th, 2011 | Finance News

DETROIT – White has passed silver as the world's most popular color for carmakers, according to an annual survey by paint maker PPG Industries.

Silver spent a decade on top before this year. But PPG said Wednesday that 21 percent of vehicles built in the 2011 model year were white. Black and silver tied for second at 20 percent each.

Carmakers tailor their colors to consumer demand.

White was the top color in North America. Black was first in Europe and silver was the most popular in Asia.

PPG Industries Inc. is also offering colors for future cars.

Those colors include Pot O' Gold, a light green with a hint of gold; White Nougat, a creamy, sparkly white; and Grape Spritz, a blue fused with purple.

PPG forecasts color trends based on fashion, interior design and other factors.

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Marriott posts 3Q loss on charges

Wednesday, October 5th, 2011 | Finance News

BETHESDA, Md. – Marriott International Inc. posted a loss for its third-quarter as the hotel operator was dragged down by special charges.

The Bethesda, Md.-based company posted a loss of $179 million, or 52 cents for the quarter that ended Sept. 9. That is down from net income of $83 million, or 23 cents per share, in the same quarter last year.

After adjusting for the special items, the company's net income rose 25 percent to $104 million, or 29 cents per share, meeting analyst expectations.

Marriott's total revenue rose 9 percent to $2.87 billion, beating the $2.81 billion that analysts polled by FactSet anticipated.

The operator of the Marriott, Ritz-Carlton and other hotels said Wednesday that it expects to $1.48 to $1.68 per share in 2012. Analysts expect $1.68 per share.

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Ford, GM may qualify for higher credit ratings

Wednesday, October 5th, 2011 | Finance News

NEW YORK – Ford and General Motors' new union contracts may qualify them for higher credit ratings.

Moody's Investors Service said Wednesday it's reviewing ratings for Ford.

The Dearborn, Mich., automaker reached a deal on Tuesday with the United Auto Workers for a new four-year contract.

The automaker's ratings under review include "Ba2" for corporate family and probability of default, and "Ba3" for senior unsecured debt, both of which are so-called junk status. They also include "Baa3" for secured bank debt, the lowest level of investment grade.

An upgrade would return Ford more squarely to investment-grade status, which the automaker has said is one of its top goals. About $55 billion of debt would be affected.

Moody's is already reviewing Detroit-based GM's ratings after its workers ratified a similar contract last week.

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