Ups and downs Featured

5:33am EDT July 28, 2003
DOWN to Comcast's plan to boost cable rates. Cable subscribers who were paying about $40 a month for one package of channels -- including plenty of home shopping programming -- will have to ante up another $20 if they want to retain certain premium services.

UP to the addition of Armstrong, Indiana and Lawrence counties to the Pittsburgh Metropolitan Statistical Area. Those three counties, all with good transportation infrastructure and plenty of developable land, will be more visible to corporate location hunters.

DOWN to Copperweld Corp.'s plan to terminate the pension plan covering about 1,500 salaried workers and retirees. The company is asking the feds to pick up the tab.

UP to the approval by a bankruptcy court to Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel Corp.'s reorganization plan.

UP to a report by Manpower Inc. that finds local employers a bit more bullish than in the recent past when it comes to hiring. While 57 percent plan to remain at current staffing levels, 28 percent say they will hire additional workers in the third quarter of the year. The news is especially good in light of the national unemployment figures reaching a nine-year high at the end of the second quarter.

UP to reports that Walgreen Co. may be planning to enter the Pittsburgh market with a store in the West End. More jobs, more competition.

DOWN to a 12 percent drop in passenger traffic at US Airways this year. Not good news for the ailing airline.

UP to Renal Solutions Inc., which landed a $17.7 million round of venture funding. That's good news for the company and a positive sign for other biotech companies.

UP to National Real Estate Information Service's plans to take over the former GlaxoSmithKline headquarters building on the Parkway West and add 500 jobs.