Ag Dept. seeks loan applications
The state Department of Agriculture is now accepting loan applications from agricultural and aqua cultural operations to fund renewable energy technology.
This new loan program, which falls under Act 209, supports renewable energy technologies such as photovoltaic, hydroelectric, wind, methane, biodiesel and ethanol. It also makes loans available for food-safety projects.
The loans, which are capped at $1.5 million, or 85 percent of the project, may be used for infrastructure, equipment, land improvement and operating costs. They will carry 3 to 5 percent interest rates.
Loan requests will be taken through Dec. 31. Applicants must be full-time farmers, ranchers, growers or aqua culturists. They must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents and they must have resided in Hawaii for the past three years.
For more information, contact an HDOA Agricultural Loan Office in your region or visit the Web site: http://hawaii.gov/hdoa/agl/agricultural-loan-division. On Oahu, phone 973-9460. Neighbor island phone numbers are: Hilo, 974-4140; Kona, 323-7591; Kauai, 274-3141, ext. 39460; Maui, 984-2400, ext. 39460; and Molokai, 1-800-468-4644, ext. 39460.
Mortgages see rate declines
WASHINGTON » Rates on 30-year mortgages, which shot up last week to the highest level in nearly a year, dropped slightly this week following passage of a housing rescue bill. Freddie Mac
reported yesterday that the nationwide average for 30-year mortgages dipped to 6.52 percent this week, down from 6.63 percent last week.
Rates on 15-year fixed-rate mortgages fell to 6.07 percent, down from 6.18 percent last week. Rates on five-year adjustable-rate mortgages also dropped to 6.07 percent, down from 6.16 percent last week. Rates on one-year adjustable-rate mortgages declined to 5.27 percent, compared to 5.49 percent last week.
Exxon's $11.7B profit sets record
HOUSTON » Exxon Mobil Corp. reported second-quarter earnings of $11.68 billion yesterday, the biggest profit from operations ever by any U.S. corporation, but the results were well short of Wall Street expectations and its shares slumped 3 percent.
The world's largest publicly traded oil company said net income came to $2.22 a share, up from $10.26 billion, or $1.83 a share, a year ago. Revenue rose 40 percent to $138.1 billion from $98.4 billion in the year-earlier quarter.
Excluding an after-tax charge of $290 million related to an Exxon Valdez court settlement, earnings amounted to $11.97 billion, or $2.27 per share.
Failure to communicate: Unionized Verizon Communications employees in New England could go on strike later this week if their contract expires tomorrow without a deal in place. Above, Verizon workers rallied outside a Verizon office in Albany, N.Y., yesterday.
GDP anemic despite rebates
WASHINGTON » The country didn't get the energetic rebound in economic growth hoped for from the government's tax rebates in the second quarter, and the economy jolted into reverse at the end of 2007, raising new recession fears.
The U.S. Commerce Department reported yesterday that gross domestic product, or GDP, increased at an annual rate of 1.9 percent in the April-to-June period. That marked an improvement over the feeble 0.9 percent growth logged in the first quarter of this year and the outright contraction in the economy during the final quarter of last year.
Kodak posts lower profit
ROCHESTER, N.Y. » Eastman Kodak Co.
said yesterday its second-quarter profit fell 14 percent as digital inkjet-printer investments and higher costs for raw materials offset a hefty tax settlement gain. It also warned that full-year operating earnings will come in at the lower end of its previous forecast.
The photography pioneer, which has transformed itself from the world's biggest maker of chemical-based film products to one centered on electronic imaging, said it earned $495 million, or $1.62 a share, down from $575 million, or $2 a share, a year earlier.
» Prudential Locations has announced the following new agents: * Jodie Tamaye
brings real estate experience from Premier Realty 2000 and Castle & Cooke Realty and also specializes in human resources management.
* Gary D. "Dino" Robley brings real estate experience from Eric Watanabe Realty and Premier Realty 2000.
* Bob Vieira has 35 years of experience in real estate including business development and property purchasing with Hawaiian Electric Co.
» Ko Olina Resort & Marina has named Regina Hodges as director of sales for Ko Olina Realty. Her previous jobs include Castle & Cooke Homes Hawaii, Kemper Real Estate Management and the former Coldwell Banker McCormick, now Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties.
» Bank of Hawaii has announced the following promotions and new hire:
* Melvin K. Harada to senior vice president of merchant services from vice president. * Keith H. Wakamura to vice president at the business loan approval department and senior loan officer from assistant vice president.
* Alison M. Wong to vice president at the Waikiki Business Banking Center from assistant vice president.
* Debra K.J. "Debbie" Kenui to vice president and cash management service manager from assistant vice president and cash management service supervisor.
* Lynette R. Sakamoto to vice president of the trust operations department.
* LeAnn R. Piper as vice president and senior trust officer in the personal trust department.
» Starwood Hotels & Resorts has announced the following new hire and promotions * Scott Kawasaki as director of public relations for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Waikiki. His previous jobs include director of public relations and advertising, a food and beverage sales manager and guest service manager at the Hyatt Regency Waikiki Resort & Spa, and as an account executive at the Aloha Surf Hotel.
* Celia Tamashiro to field marketing manager from field marketing coordinator. Her previous jobs include administrative assistant at the Moana Surfrider.
* Sharon Duffin to field marketing coordinator from management trainee and marketing coordinator. She was previously a marketing executive for the Marriott Ko Olina Beach Club and a Marriott Rewards representative in Salt Lake City.