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Archive for Wednesday, October 23, 2002

Briefcase

October 23, 2002

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Ranching: USDA declares county agricultural disaster area

Officials with the U.S. Department of Agriculture on Tuesday designated Douglas County and 53 other Kansas counties as agricultural disaster areas.

The designation will allow livestock producers to apply for low-interest emergency loans to help deal with losses caused by the drought. Currently, the department is not allowing grain farmers to apply for the loans.

In addition to Douglas, other area counties eligible include Franklin, Jefferson, Johnson, Leavenworth, Miami, Osage and Shawnee.

Ranchers can obtain more information about the program by calling the Douglas County Farm Service Agency office at 843-4260.

Movie Industry: AMC Entertainment posts quarterly loss

Kansas City, Mo.-based AMC Entertainment Inc. said Tuesday it lost $8 million during its second quarter, and it blamed "weak film product" and other factors.

The loss of 22 cents per share mirrored its earnings of 22 cents per share during the same period last year. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial/First Call expected a loss of 13 cents for the quarter, which ended Sept. 26.

AMC reported revenues of $451 million for the quarter, a 20 percent jump from its year-ago revenues of $377 million. The revenue increase was fueled in part by its acquisition of the General Cinema and Gulf States theater chains.

"It was a pedestrian quarter," said analyst Matthew Harrigan of Janco Partners.

Wall Street: Earnings of interest

Several companies with operations in the area have announced earnings recently.

Schlumberger Ltd. reported earnings of 30 cents per share versus 34 cents per share a year earlier. The oil field services company has a manufacturing facility in Lawrence.

Office Depot reported earnings of 28 cents per share versus 20 cents per share a year ago. The company operates a store in Lawrence.

Atchison-based Atchison Casting Corp. posted a loss of $2.41 cents per share for the quarter, up from a loss of $1.28 per share a year ago.

United Parcel Service Inc., which operates a delivery center in Lawrence, posted earnings of 51 cents per share compared to 50 cents per share during the same period a year ago.

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