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BUSINESS NEWS: 369-1962 THE CINCINNATI ENQUIRER WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 1991 E-5 Amex stocksE-8 Mutual fundsE-8 O NYSE stocksE-6 NASDAQ seIectE-7 " )) (Or IQ)LUJg5) Portfolio horn Ohio hel ps first-time e buyers 3100 3050 3000 h i I . o 2950 2900 ago. The bank issued $1.5 million of its $3.75 million state allocation. "We're encouraging people to take advantage of the program because the (first-time buyer) money won't last long," Hanks said. Crawford said she believes more first-time buyers will participate in the program this fall because the state has given banks a longer time to process the loans. The current program will last through September, 1992; last fall's program was three months long. Chris Moermond, loan officer for Bank One Cincinnati in Milford, said that although her bank has not had a lot of applicants, she thinks the bank will not have any problem issuing the $1.35 million it received for first-time buyers. the buyer to make a lower down payment than a conventional loan and the program's debt-to-income ratio requirement is greater, allowing the buyer more money for other expenses. First-time buyers can benefit greatly from state-financed mortgages. For example,' Crawford estimates, when the 30-year rate is at 7.6212, the down payment on a $75,000 mortgage is $3,800; the down payment on a conventional loan is $7,800 with a 9 rate. Most banks generally charge 10-20 down on 30-year loans. The buyers who get the loans will be charged maximum closing costs of 2.75. An additional 1 will be charged to the seller. Bill Hanks, a vice president at Mayflower Mortgage Inc., said his bank had at least 25 applicants Monday, up 30 from a year State offers $379 million BY JEFF McKINNEY The Cincinnati Enquirer Home-mortgage interest rates are at their lowest level in four years in Greater Cincinnati, but Ohio-financed mortgages are still popular with first-time home buyers. The Ohio Housing Finance Agency this week began offering $379 million in new state money to first-time buyers for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages. The interest rate of 7.62'2 is the lowest in the agency's history. The average rate on a 30-year, fixed-rate conventional mortgage, which accounts for 85 of local mortgages, dropped to 9.22 Tuesday, from 9.31 last week and 10.02 a year ago. Two lenders in Greater Cincinnati said Tuesday they are seeing more applications for money than a year ago. "We had people standing in line when we opened Monday, including one person who spent Sunday night waiting to get a loan," said Mary Crawford, a loan processor at Hunter Savings in Milford. She said 14 people applied for loans Monday, double the number of year ago. Crawford said Hunter Savings has authorized $1.25 million in mortgages out of the $2.5 million it received from the state. She said the state-financed mortgages are popular for two reasons: They allow 2850 5 6 9 10 3 29 30 2 Aug. Sept. Dow Jones 30 Industrials Daily highs, with closes at arrow tip Area-interest stocks in industrial average (NYSE change from previous day) AT&T - 58 GE-14 P&G -18 Cincinnati Stock Exchange volume Tuesday 1,743,300 amw ii Mil ymmmm ii tr Dow finishes below 3,000 i 0 "H;" : . Earnings are bleak for banks Quarterly report shows 12 decline The stock market declined broadly Tuesday, battered by computer-driven sell programs and lingering disappointment that the Federal Reserve has yet to nudge interest rates lower. The Dow Jones average of 30 industrials lost 24.60 points to close at 2,982.56. It was the key barometer's first close below the 3,000 level in three weeks. Volume on the floor of the Big Board came to 143.35 million shares as of 4 p.m., up from 109.25 million in the previous session. U.S. posts trade surplus The United States posted a $2.97 billion surplus in the broadest measure of foreign trade from April through June as payments by foreign countries for the Persian Gulf war continued to give America its best international performance in nine years, the government said Tuesday. BY DAVE SKIDMORE The Associated Press WASHINGTON Earnings at the nation's banks fell 12 in the April-June period from a year earlier, for the most dismal second quarter in four years, the government said Tuesday. - J to ss3- Banks earned The rare surplus in the country's current account followed an even larger $10.5 billion trade surplus in the first three months of the year, the Commerce De si.' Hit v-rMnm LaaaMMMMMn - - ;-- partment said. Both surpluses came about because of $34.3 billion in cash payments made by Japan and other countries during l (ill rmmfmm m A W the first six months of the year to reimburse the U.S. military for the Persian Banks A list of commercial bank profits in Ohio and neighboring states for second quarter of 1991 and the same period in 1990. The total for the U.S. in; 1991 was $4,633 billion compared to $5,267 billion in 1990. The figures, provided by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., are in millions of Gulf war. $4.63 billion, compared with $5.64 billion during the first three months of the year and $5.27 billion a year earlier. It was the worst second-quarter performance since the industry lost money in the April-June period of 1987. However, the deterioration in profits masked some early signs of stabilization in the troubled industry. Non-current loans The Cincinnati EnquirerJohn Curley Chris Paduano, Adex Co. production art manager, looks over Sister Cities Conference banners his company produced. Sister cities ready to talk trade Tristate companies underwrite cost of conference with Soviets State 1991 1990 $389 $296 $126 $117 $84 $92 $246 $230 $291 $290 $303 $295 Ind. Ky. Mich. Ohio Pa. Sister cities Board backs P&G action Procter & Gamble Co.'s board of directors said Tuesday that P&G managers "acted in good faith and responsibly" in asking Cincinnati Police to investigate leaks of confidential information to the Wall Street Journal. The company said its board received a complete review of the investigation during its regular monthly meeting in Cincinnati and "considered both the legal and ethical issues involved." The board concurred with management in considering the matter closed, the company said. Police began investigating the leaks in June but failed to turn up enough evidence to bring any criminal charges. Heinz to trim work force H.J. Heinz Co., a Pittsburgh-based firm with 34,100 employees worldwide, will make "significant" job cuts as part of an ongoing cost reduction program, a company spokesman said. The company, which held its annual shareholders meeting Tuesday, has already trimmed jobs in Weight Watchers and in its bakery business. The additional cuts will include jobs in Heinz U.S.A., Ore Ida Foods Inc. and Star-Kist Foods Inc., as well as affiliate companies in the United Kingdom and Italy, the spokesman said. The company could not say whether the additional re Theme of the conference is "Together for the Future," with emphasis on challenges and opportunities for greater U.S.-Soviet cooperation in government, business and trade, ecology and human services. Among the many workshops planned during the four-day session are several sessions on "Business & Trade," from both an urban and rural perspective. For information, contact the Cincinnati-Kharkov Sister Cities office, 241-8800. Cincinnati is host this week to the 1991 U.S.-U.S.S.R. Sister Cities Conference, Thursday through Sunday, which is expected to draw 420 representatives from 65 U.S.-Soviet sister city pairings. Sponsor of the conference is the Procter & Gamble Co., with events hosted by Aeroflot Soviet Airlines, Chiquita Brands International, the city of Cincinnati, Coca-Cola, Delta Air Lines, GE Aircraft Engines, Jesse Philips Foundation, Omni Netherland Plaza and P&G. BY MIKE BOYER The Cincinnati Enquirer Trade is just one of a half-dozen topics to be discussed during the 1991 U.S.-U.S.S.R. Sister Cities Conference starting Thursday in Cincinnati. But among the more than 220 Soviet representatives attending the unprecedented four-day conference, "it's the highest priority," said local attorney Joseph J. Dehner, a member of the Cincinnati-Kharkov Sister Cities Committee. Because of the desperate state of the Soviet economy and need for hard currency, Dehner said, Soviet officials are anxious for U.S. investment and trade. "They want to make deals right now," he said. That's undoubtedly good news to nearly two dozen Cincinnati-area companies that contributed $320,000 to underwrite the those 90 or more days past due shrank slightly for the first time in a year and a half, to $83.1 billion from $83.3 billion in the first quarter. "Unfortunately, the second-quarter figures could be characterized as the banking industry bumping along the bottom of the recession," said FDIC Chairman L. William Seidman. "It doesn't look like it's getting much worse, but it doesn't look like it's getting much better." He predicted the industry would finish 1991 with $18 billion or $19 billion in profits. That would be a modest improvement over 1990, when the industry posted profits of $16.7 billion. Regionally, bank profits were weakest in the Northeast, followed for the first time by the West. The Northeast has been suffering from a real estate slump for two years, but in recent months commercial real estate in Southern California has begun to show signs of trouble. the visibility the conference will give them in the Soviet Union, Dehner said. Bill Dobson, P&G spokesman, said the company is supporting the conference not only to build business ties in the Soviet Union but because the conference, which is expected to receive wide media exposure, is important to Cincinnati. (Please see CITIES, Page E-7) sponsor of the event to a half-dozen conference contributors such as Arthur Anderson & Co. and Union Central Life Insurance Co., each of which chipped in $1,000. The major corporate sponsors such as P&G, GE Aircraft Engines and Chiquita Brands International, which are underwriting specific social events, "are going to see really significant benefits" as a result of cost of the conference, the largest gathering of Soviet citizens in the United States. The event is expected to draw 200 representatives from 65 U.S. sister cities. The corporate contributors range from Procter & Gamble which made the largest single contribution, $50,000, and is Neiman-Marcus offers Hummers for holidays 4 Vv ductions will affect Heinz Pet Products Co. of Newport, Ky which employs about 240 people. Manufacturers may hire A Manpower Inc. survey indicates employment prospects should be best in Cincinnati this fall in the manufacture of durable and non-durable goods and in the wholesaleretail trade. Lower work force levels are expected in transportationpublic utilities and financeinsurancereal estate areas, according to the survey's employment projections for the October-December period. Manpower's Blyss Allonier said 17 of businesses interviewed intend to add staff, 10 plan work force reductions and 70 expect to remain at current levels. The remaining 3 of those interviewed were undecided. LSI director retiring W.B. "Bud" Rae, a director of LSI Industries and president of its SGI Integrated Graphic Systems subsidiary in Houston, is retiring effective Oct. 1. Rae founded SGI, which designs lighting and graphics systems, in 1968. Blue Ash-based LSI acquired the company in 1989. Peter F. Carey has been hired to succeed Rae as executive vice president and chief operations officer at SGI. Gas prices decline The price of gasoline at the pump has fallen for the first time in six weeks, the American Automobile Association said. Nationwide, the average price for a gallon of self-serve regular unleaded dropped 0.5t, to $1.16, for the week ending Tuesday, the auto club said. Compiled by Dick Benson from staff and news service reports mm $1 "r- 5 Richardson said the Hummer the all-terrain vehicle used by allied troops during Operation Desert Storm is not only unusual, but also practical. "Our big push for this year's Hummer was that it was a unique form of transportation," said Richardson. "Of course, Operation Desert Storm got everyone to begin thinking about its utility." Limited edition But, unlike the camouflaged vehicle used in the war, the Neiman-Marcus version will be available with a square instead of military back and is offered in white, red or sand. It will be sold only through year's end. Equipped with air conditioning and stereos, 100 Hummers will be available in the limited edition. Brady White of Beverly Hills, Calif., known as "Santa to the stars," drove one onto a field at Willow Bend Hunt and Polo Club in the Dallas suburb of Piano for Tuesday's news conference to unveil the gifts. The least expensive gift is a $10 Christmas platter Richardson said is also one of the store's most popular. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS DALLAS Neiman-Marcus shoppers can handle either front lines or hard times with the whimsical gifts offered in its 1991 Christmas Book, including $50,000 his-and-hers Hummer vehicles like those used in the desert during the Persian Gulf war. The venerable vendor of valuables recognized this year that some of its affluent clients may have fallen on hard times with the recession. So it kept a group of presents in its annual holiday catalog at $25 and under. "We have always strived over the years to find things that are reasonably priced, so that we offer merchandise at every price level. But we've built our reputation on offering the rare, the whimsical, the unusual," said Martha Richardson, spokeswoman for the Dallas-based chain. "Sometimes those items cost more but that is what our shoppers expect." Transportation is a recurrent theme for annual presents by the company, which has peddled his-and-hers hot air balloons, submarines, airplanes and even camels since it introduced the his-and-hers concept in its catalog 31 years ago. '4! Hi r. ' tk. The Associated Press Brady White as Santa Claus poses with the Neiman Marcus edition of the military vehicle Hummer, featured in its 1991 Christmas catalog.