Business Briefs
Reported by Star-Bulletin staff & wire


United adds winter flight to Kona from Denver

United Airlines will add a weekly direct Denver-Kona flight to its mainland-Hawaii services for the winter, building on the success of the Denver-Honolulu route it opened in February.

The new service will run Dec. 14 through April 27, with one flight each Saturday using a Boeing 757-200 aircraft seating 182 passengers. United said the new service will complement its Denver-Honolulu service, which also runs once a week on Saturdays. United also services Kona from Los Angeles and San Francisco.

The airline has promoted its direct Denver flights as an easy way for people to get from Hawaii to ski the Colorado slopes or for people to escape the Colorado winter and visit the islands. United says it now has more service from the western states to Hawaii than it had before the Sept. 11 tragedies dealt a blow to air travel.

Analyst coverage shifts for Bank of Hawaii

Bank of Hawaii Corp., whose stock has gained 11.4 percent this year, had its coverage dropped by one brokerage firm and revised by another.

Credit Suisse First Boston said it is ceasing coverage of Bank of Hawaii because primary analyst Rosalind Looby is on a leave of absence. Looby, who last updated her rating on Oct. 23, 2001, had a "hold" rating on the company.

Meanwhile, Lehman Brothers' Robert Lacoursiere initiated coverage of Bank of Hawaii with an "underweight/neutral" rating under Lehman Brothers' new ratings system. His rating means that he expects the company to underperform the small-cap banking sector, which he rates "neutral." Lehman Brothers analyst Brock Vandervliet, who in May downgraded Bank of Hawaii to "market perform" from "buy," Vandervliet has been promoted to covering the large-cap banks.

Seven analysts now cover Bank of Hawaii, according to Bloomberg News, with three rating it a "buy," two a "hold" and two a "sell."


Industry chief pushes U.S. tourism agency

ORLANDO, Fla. >> The United States is losing tourism dollars by not adequately marketing itself overseas, says a top industry official who is pushing for a national tourism agency.

Setting up a tourism marketing corporation would go a long way in restoring the industry in the United States, said William Norman, head of the Travel Industry Association, in a speech planned for today.

The United States is the only major industrialized nation in the world whose government does not directly spend money on marketing tourism abroad.

Gas prices stable, dropping by penny

CAMARILLO, Calif. >> Gasoline prices declined nationally by less than a penny in the past two weeks, reflecting continued stability in prices despite strong consumer demand.

Prices at the pump have fluctuated by only 2.5 cents since April, analyst Trilby Lundberg said yesterday.

Nationwide, the price of gas at the pump averaged about $1.45 per gallon on Friday, according to the Lundberg survey of 8,000 stations. That was down less than a penny over the past two weeks.


Jollibee poised to post record quarterly profit

MANILA >> Jollibee Foods Corp., the fast-food company that outsells McDonald's Corp. in the Philippines, may post a record quarterly profit after raising prices and shutting unprofitable shops. The company, whose namesake chain sells mango-peach pies and burgers with a sweet sauce, may say second-quarter profit rose to 251 million pesos ($4.8 million) from 234 million pesos a year earlier, according to analysts polled by Bloomberg News.


[Hawaii Inc.]


>> Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties has promoted Karin Warganich to office manager at its the Kapiolani Office. She was formerly the escrow coordinator at Kapiolani. Warganich will be responsible for the management of personnel and agents, marketing coordination and all day-to-day operations.


>> Alvin T. Onaka, state registrar and chief of the Office of Health Status Monitoring of the Hawaii Department of Health, was recently elected president of the National Association for Public Health Statistics and Information Systems. He will be working with Canada, Mexico, the United Nations and the U.S. government to re-engineer the national and international vital and health statistics systems for preparation against threats of international terrorism and identity fraud. He previously worked for the U.S. National Academy of Sciences as a research associate in the Department of Epidemiology and Statistics at the Radiation Effects Research Foundation in Hiroshima, Japan.


>> Four Hawaii commercial real estate professionals were named certified commercial investment members at the recent CCIM conference in Arizona. Hugh Damon of CB Richard Ellis Hawaii Inc., Mary Emerson of The Estate of James Campbell, Dean Hirabayashi of GE Capital Hawaii, and Pat Low of I2C Realty Corp. completed the coursework and examination necessary to win this designation.

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