Business Briefs

Reported by Star-Bulletin staff & wire

Friday, March 30, 2001

Hawaiian Air shares zoom 25 percent

Hawaiian Airlines Inc. shares jumped more than 25 percent today in heavier than usual trading, to close at $3.25, up 66 cents.

The action came before today's expected release of the company's earnings statement for the final quarter of 2000.

The closing price was the highest since it hit $3.25 on Dec. 31, 1998. A total of 187,200 Hawaiian shares were traded on the American Stock Exchange, more than eight times the average of the past six months.

After today's climb, Hawaiian's stock was up 33.3 percent for the past 12 months and 79.3 percent since Jan. 1.

Company spokesman Keoni Wagner said he knows of no reason for the movement and there had been no announcements that might have caused it.

Americans' spending, incomes still rising

WASHINGTON >> Consumers were more frugal in February after a January buying binge but they still spent at a moderate pace. Incomes rose a bit more quickly than spending.

The Commerce Department reported today that Americans' spending rose by 0.3 percent last month. That followed a big 1.0 percent jump in January, according to revised figures, even stronger than the government previously estimated and the largest increase since February 2000.

Incomes, which include wages, interest and government benefits, increased by 0.4 percent in February, after a revised 0.5 percent gain, a little weaker than reported one month ago. Analysts were forecasting a 0.3 percent rise in both spending and income.

Japan Cabinet endorses deregulation plan

TOKYO >> Japan's Cabinet today endorsed a new three-year deregulation package focused on information technology to stimulate the economy, officials said.

Japan has been trying for over a decade to reignite strong growth but the economy has failed to respond despite previous deregulation measures and massive amounts of public spending.

The package, which takes effect Saturday, covers 554 deregulation projects in 15 areas including information technology, the environment and education over the next three years. But it retreated from an interim proposal that urged more aggressive steps to open up Japan's telecommunications giant, Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp., to more competition.

U.S. February hotel profits slowest in year, study says

NEW YORK >> Hotel profit in the United States in February had the slowest growth since January 2000 as a sluggish economy curbed business travel and vacations, Smith Travel Research said. Revenue per available room rose 2.9 percent in February from a year ago. Revenue per available room for luxury hotels rose 1 percent in February, the slowest growth rate among all price categories it tracks. Overall, occupancy rates fell 1 percent in the United States.

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