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Circuit City Cuts Installation Jobs

BY CSA STAFF

Richmond, Va. Circuit City Stores Inc. said Monday it is shrinking its home-installation business in response to the nationwide slowdown in home construction.

Over the next four months, Circuit City will cut 67 jobs of workers who pre-wire new single-family homes, spokesman Jim Babb said. Some of those workers will be shifted to similar jobs wiring hotels or condos, or to other areas of the service business.

Babb said the company hopes to retain most of the 67 employees. Those who lose their jobs will be offered severance.

The company’s Firedog installation-service business employs a total of more than 3,000.

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Giant Eagle alleges chocolate price fixing

BY CSA STAFF

PITTSBURGH According to reports, Giant Eagle has filed suit against a number of chocolate manufacturers, claiming that it was overcharged for products. The company alleges that during the period between 2002 and 2007, it was overcharged for $200 million worth of chocolate products.

The company has named some major players in the suit, including Hershey, Mars and Cadbury Schweppes. According to reports, the suit is not the first to claim overcharging by chocolate manufacturers.

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Sears to sell more appliances at Kmart

BY CSA STAFF

HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. Sears Holdings, according to its annual report, plans to sell appliances at more of its Kmart stores and will open more dealer stores this year.

The company also said in its annual report filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that it expects capital spending this year to be flat with last year’s level.

In the filing, Sears Holdings said it “will continue to explore opportunities to profitably cross-merchandise products and services” between its Kmart and Sears stores.

That includes continuing to roll out home appliances, such as those in Sears’ proprietary Kenmore brand, to more Kmart stores, Appliances, a category in which Sears is the dominant U.S. retailer, accounted for about 15% of company revenues during fiscal 2007, the filing said.

As of Feb. 2, the end of fiscal 2007, about 280 Kmart stores were selling major home appliances, the filing said. At the end of fiscal 2005, about 100 Kmart stores were selling Sears-branded products such as tools and appliances.

The company said it opened 40 dealer stores during fiscal 2007, and would open more in rural and urban areas this year. Sears has 857 dealer stores, which sell appliances, electronics, lawn and garden equipment, hardware and car batteries.

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