Boeing breaks ground at new Shanghai site

The Boeing Co. and two China-based partners broke ground Tuesday on a maintenance, repair and overhaul facility at the international airport in Shanghai. “Working together, we are taking the first of many steps toward offering our airline customers the services that will help them safely and efficiently expand, while keeping pace with the tremendous growth in commercial aviation that we see in China over the next 20 years,” said Scott Carson, president and chief executive of Boeing Commercial Airplanes. Boeing owns 60 percent of the $85 million investment, with Shanghai Airport Group Co. holding 25 percent and Shanghai Airlines Co. Ltd. holding 15 percent.

Cascade earnings post strong rise

Cascade Financial Corp. posted third-quarter earnings up 9 percent over the same quarter last year. For the year to date, the parent company of Cascade Bank has seen its earnings increase 13 percent. In the quarter that ended Sept. 30, Cascade’s net income was $3.3 million, or 27 cents per diluted share. For the first nine months of 2006, the company reported a net income of $9.8 million, or 79 cents per diluted share, up from $9.6 million, or 78 cents per share, in 2005. Compared with the third quarter of 2005, Cascade’s core commercial loan portfolio increased 21 percent, to $827 million. Its assets grew 11 percent, to $1.3 billion.

Whidbey bank pays cash dividend

On Tuesday, Washington Banking Co. announced a cash dividend of 5 cents per share to be paid on Nov. 21. The holding company for Whidbey Island Bank has paid a quarterly cash dividend since its 1998 initial public offering, increasing the dividend each year. It also reported its third-quarter earnings, up 8 percent per share year to date over 2005. Through Sept. 30, the company’s net income in 2006 was $7.68 million, up from $7.07 million in 2005.

Whirlpool profits rise, but stock falls

Strong sales and the acquisition of a former rival combined for a 3 percent increase in third-quarter profits for Whirlpool Corp., but investors weren’t impressed. Whirlpool shares fell $2.63, or 2.9 percent, to close at $86.70 on the New York Stock Exchange. Shares have traded in a 52-week range of $74.07 to $96.

Nest eggs low for most Hispanics

Seven in 10 Hispanic adults have saved less than $5,000 toward retirement, according to a study released Tuesday. The study was conducted for the Latino Coalition, a nonprofit group that examines policy issues related to Hispanics in the United States, and Americans for Secure Retirement, a coalition that encourages the use of annuities to fund retirement.

Fed not expected to raise rates

Federal Reserve policy-makers are likely to keep their finger on the interest-rate pause button, giving America’s borrowers another break. Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke and his central bank colleagues opened a two-day meeting Tuesday against the backdrop of slowing economic growth and receding energy prices.

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