Toshiba to complete
Japan's Toshiba Corp. said yesterday that it expected to complete its takeover of Westinghouse Electric Co., the U.S. producer of atomic power plant equipment, by the end of this month.
Japan's Ishikawajima-Harima Heavy Industries Co. and the Shaw Group Inc. of the United States will be partnering with Toshiba to complete the acquisition of the company from its parent, British Nuclear Fuels PLC, Toshiba said in a statement.
BNFL agreed in February to sell the business along with its U.S. unit, BNFL USA Group, to Toshiba for US$5.4 billion.
Toshiba's ownership interest in Westinghouse will be 77 percent, Shaw's 20 percent and IHI's 3 percent, the statement said. Toshiba's investment will amount to US$4.158 billion, it said.
BP output falls
BP Plc, Europe's second-largest oil company, said quarterly production declined for a fifth consecutive period as reduced output from its Prudhoe Bay field in Alaska added to startup delays in the Gulf of Mexico.
Third-quarter output was 3.80 million barrels a day of oil and gas, the London-based company said yesterday in a Regulatory News Service statement. It was the fifth straight quarter in which production was lower than the year-earlier period.
Chief Executive Officer John Browne, 58, is struggling to restore investor confidence after corroded pipelines forced the August shutdown of Prudhoe Bay, the largest oil field in the U.S.
Wal-Mart sales growth
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. announced yesterday it has lowered its estimated increase in September sales at stores open at least a year to 1.3 percent from 1.8 percent.
Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, said that the revision was "a result of the monthly reconciliation process that the company undergoes to determine its comparable sales percentage."
Its shares fell US$0.91, or 1.8 percent, to US$$48.55 in premarket trading.
Sales at stores open at least a year, known as same-store sales, are considered a key indicator of a retailer's health. Wal-Mart noted in its Saturday sales release that latest sales were being compared to sales last year influenced by buying after Hurricane Katrina.
The retailer said it would announce early Thursday its official sales figures for the five-week September period.
Big diamond on sale
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa
A 603-carat diamond, the biggest found in 13 years and the 15th largest in the world, went on sale in Antwerp yesterday after being uncovered in Lesotho in southern Africa, the owners said.
"It's about a third bigger than a golf ball," a spokeswoman for the owners said.
It was hard to peg a valuation on the find since that depended on how many cut diamonds could be fashioned from it. A handful of the world's top diamond cutters would be allowed several hours to examine the stone before they submitted bids.
The diamond, named the "Lesotho Promise," was found at the Letseng Diamond Mine high in the mountains of Lesotho, a kingdom surrounded by South Africa.
The gem is the biggest uncut diamond found since the Millennium Star - 777 carats large - was discovered in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 1993.
Dunn facing cancer
SAN FRANCISCO, California
Ousted Hewlett-Packard Co. Chairwoman Patricia Dunn, who survived breast cancer and melanoma, needs to begin chemotherapy treatments for advanced ovarian cancer, according to a person close to Dunn.
Dunn, 53, is scheduled to start her treatments Friday at the University of California at San Francisco for the recurrent cancer, the person said late Tuesday. The person asked to remain anonymous because a formal announcement was not planned.
Toshiba to complete