Airlines Closer to Merger, Starbucks Bids for Tully’s Coffee: Consumer Business Recap
The board of the Allied Pilots Association has given the long-proposed merger of American Airlines parent AMR Corporation (AAMRQ.PK) and US Airways Group (NYSE:LCC) its blessing as it okayed an interim labor framework should the two carriers go forward with a union to take AMR out of bankruptcy-court protection. Following three weeks of confidential talks overseen by AMR’s creditors committee, the board voted 11-5 in favor of a proposed accord, but the terms were not reported.
ConAgra Foods (NYSE:CAG) sees its credit rating lowered by one notch at Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services to the edge of junk status from BBB to BBB-. The outlook is stable, but ratings were placed on watch for downgrade on November 27th after ConAgra said it was acquiring Ralcorp for around $6.8 billion to be funded primarily with debt and as much as $350 million in equity.
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Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) is set to surpass 2 million domestic vehicle sales in 2012 for the second consecutive year, which would make it the only auto brand to do so in the United States this year. If that is not enough, the Ford Focus is poised to become 2012’s best-selling worldwide nameplate while the Ford Fiesta is on pace to be the year’s best-selling global B-Car, giving Ford the best-selling B and C-Car in the world.
Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX) remains among seven bidders for Tully’s Coffee, a long-embattled Seattle coffee chain which filed for bankruptcy protection in October. According to inside sources, the offer is for about half of the smaller chain’s stores and should Starbucks win the bidding, the other stores would be available for others to purchase.