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Business news in brief

In the Region

Quigley CEO stepping down

Guy J. Quigley, chairman, president,

and CEO of Quigley Corp., who founded the maker of the Cold-Eeze line of cold remedies 20 years ago, resigned yesterday. The Doylestown company was the subject of a proxy battle this spring led by investor Ted Karkus. His dissident slate of seven directors won a majority of the votes cast at the May 20 annual meeting. Shares closed at $4.26, up 26 cents. - Mike Armstrong

FDA flags effects of asthma drugs

Federal officials are requiring new labels on asthma drugs such as Merck's Singulair that highlight language about suicidal behavior, depression, and anxiousness seen in a small number of patients. The Food and Drug Administration is asking Merck and AstraZeneca, which have operations in the Philadelphia area, and Critical Therapeutics to raise warnings about psychiatric problems reported by some patients taking their drugs. - AP

State provides $11.1 million grant

Pennsylvania's Department of Community and Economic Development said this week that it was giving Doylestown Hospital Authority an $11.1 million grant to help pay down debt for Doylestown Hospital's $87 million emergency department expansion project. The grant, from the Infrastructure and Facilities Improvement program, will be paid out over 20 years. Construction began in May 2008 and is expected to be completed next spring. In a press release, DCED Deputy Secretary Dee Kaplan said the grant would help "boost employment opportunities" and provide needed medical services. - Stacey Burling

Court refuses to block new jet routes

A plan to modernize jet routes in the country's most congested airspace has cleared a key legal hurdle. A federal appeals court in Washington this week rejected several lawsuits challenging the Federal Aviation Administration's plan to alter the paths airliners use at major airports in Philadelphia, New York, and Newark, N.J. The changes are designed to help reduce flight delays, but residents in several states worry the new routes will expose them to more aircraft noise. They had asked the court to block the plan. In recent years, nearly three-quarters of all flight delays nationally have been caused by backups in New York and Philadelphia. - AP

PNC says it will build loan reserves

PNC Financial Services Group Inc., the fifth-biggest U.S. bank by deposits, said the country was "mid-cycle" through the recession and that the company expected to build reserves for bad loans through the end of this year, Bloomberg News reported. The biggest credit losses tied to residential real estate are in the past, though commercial real estate and general corporate borrowing are beginning to show "weakness," Pittsburgh-

based PNC's Michael Hannon, the bank's chief risk officer, said during a conference call in which the news service participated. PNC posted a profit decline for 2008 and a fourth-quarter loss after agreeing to buy Cleveland-based National City Corp., ranked among the top-10 subprime lenders in 2006, Bloomberg reported. Losses from commercial real estate and commercial and industrial loans will probably be less severe than those seen from residential loans, Hannon said in the call, according to the news service. - Bloomberg News

Two area nonprofits combine

NHS Human Services, Lafayette Hill, said it had acquired The Association for Independent Growth Inc. (TAIG) in Philadelphia. No money changed hands in the "acquisition by reorganization" of the two nonprofits. TAIG, which has 472 employees and about 500 clients with intellectual and developmental disabilities in a variety of settings, will retain its name. With the acquisition, NHS, which operates in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and five other states, will have $440 million in revenue and more than 13,000 employees. - Stacey Burling

Aker delivers 7th in 12-ship contract

The Aker Philadelphia Shipyard has delivered its seventh ship, a 600-foot-long product tanker, to American Shipping Co., the company announced. The ship is part of a series of 12 being built by the shipyard, with a completion date on the last ship expected in 2011. -Roslyn Rudolph

NutriSystem offers 2Q guidance

Weight-loss company NutriSystem Inc. offered profit guidance for its fiscal second quarter and said it would incur charges related to cost-reduction efforts and an abandoned investment. The Horsham company said it expected profit of 26 to 30 cents a share, including charges. It said it would incur charges of about $1 million pretax in relation to layoffs (it would not disclose how many) and other cost-cutting objectives. The cuts are expected to lower pretax expenses by $5 million to $8 million in 2009. NutriSystem said it was also abandoning an investment in ZeroWater water filters. That move will require a charge of $3.6 million pretax in the second quarter to write off its remaining investment. Shares closed down $1.50 at $14.05. - AP

TelVue gets line of credit from Lenfest

TelVue Corp. has been given a $500,000 unsecured line of credit by its majority stockholder, H.F. "Gerry" Lenfest, an 8-K filing said. The Mount Laurel firm, which helps spiff up public-access TV channels with flashier graphics and sells services that allow pay-per-view ordering, would borrow money under the note for general working capital. - Roslyn Rudolph


Bank told by OTS chief to backdate

BankUnited Financial Corp., a Florida thrift shut down by regulators in the largest bank failure this year, was told to backdate $80 million in capital last year by Scott Polakoff, acting director of the Office of Thrift Supervision, a document showed. He was suspended in March. The Treasury inspector general said in a May 21 report that the OTS authorized "inappropriate" backdating of capital by six institutions, without identifying Bank-

United. BankUnited, with $8.6 billion of deposits and $12.8 billion in assets, was shut down May 21. Assets were sold to private-equity firms including WL Ross & Co. and Carlyle Group. - Bloomberg News

Globe: 3 possible buyers emerge

The Boston Globe reports three area businessmen, including a member of the family that once owned the paper, emerged as possible buyers. It said those who have expressed interest are Stephen Pagliuca, a private-equity executive and co-owner of the NBA's Celtics; Jack Connors, cofounder of a Boston ad firm and chairman of Partners HealthCare; and Stephen Taylor, a former Globe executive whose family sold the paper to the New York Times Co. in 1993 for $1.1 billion. - AP