The Philadelphia Inquirer from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on May 27, 1978 · Page 14
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The Philadelphia Inquirer from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania · Page 14

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Saturday, May 27, 1978
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ftilatetjjfe Inquirer business 6 B Saturday, May 27, 1978 New car If your new car is a lemon, you're in trouble. If it is under a full warranty, a manufacturer has to repair or replace it, but most cars are sold under limited warranties, which aren't much help in a real crunch. '. Typically, if a dealer fails in several attempts to get the knock out of your new car or fix any other persistent problem, he will advise you to throw in the towel, give up, trade it in and get something new. Customers, in other words, are asked to bear the cost of bad car manufacture, and many wind up doing just that. You have other legal rights besides those listed in the warranty, but it can be inconvenient and expensive to pursue them. Michael Pertschuk, chairman of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), has pro- Business summary ITT bid for secrecy is rejected Compiled by The Inquirer Staff A federal judge in Washington rejected a request by International Telephone & Telegraph Co. (ITT) to keep secret the details of a complaint that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) plans to file in connection with questionable overseas payments. Judge George Hart stayed his order for 20 days to permit an appeal. An ITT attorney said it would be filed with an appeals court. ITT previously had said that disclosure of details of the $9 million in questionable payments by the parent company and overseas subsidiaries could lead to the takeover of several major manufacturing units in western Europe. Hart ruled that it would not be "proper" to seal or censor the complaint. Regional First Pennsylvania Mortgage Trust reduced its net loss for the third quarter ended April 30 to $1.9 million from $4.1 million in the third quarter a year ago. The nine-month net loss was $6.2 million, after a $4.2 million gain on an asset swap, compared to a loss of $8.1 million for the same period in 1977. The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania will receive bids June 20 for the sale of $69 million in various-purpose bonds that will mature between Dec. IS and 1997. The state last sold bonds in January, when it offered $95 million worth at a net interest cost of 5.59 percent. Johnson & Johnson completed the previously approved acquisition of Extracorporeal Medical Specialties Inc., King of Prussia. Extracoporeal produces kidney dialysis equipment. National General Motors announced that prices of its standard Chevette models would rise $95 per car on Thursday. Meanwhile, American Motors Corp. said it would boost prices of its compact and subcompact cars by $50, or 1.2 percent, effective Thursday. Prices for utility vehicles from the company's Jeep line will go up $100, or 1.7 percent, and the price of optional equipment on all vehicles will rise $29 a unit. Major American copper producers have raised prices in response to the rise in commodity futures sparked by the unrest in Zaire. Asarco lifted its prices 2Vi cents a pound to 66V2 cents after Kennecott shifted its system to link prices to the rising prices on the New York Commodities Exchange. Newmont Mining added 3 cents a pound and Duval tacked on 4 cents. Gold and the dollar The dollar was generally stable yesterday on European currency exchanges, although the exchanges closed before they were able to respond to the announcement of a higher U.S. monthly trade deficit. The price of gold rose slightly in both London and Zurich. People Alfred J. DiMatties was named vice president and trust officer at Midlan-tic National BankSouth, Haddon-field, N.J Alvin Atteson has been elected vice president and general manager of discrete devices at Solid State Scientific Inc., Montgomeryville. The bottom line The New York branch of a West German bank, Deutsche Genoo-senschaftbank, is offering Americans their first chance to purchase certificates of deposit denominated in a foreign currency The certificates will be issued in German marks, and will enable investors to protect themselves against further erosion in r.j m o; the U.S. dollar. The sr.aiiV-i certificate issued will be for 250,u3J marks about $120,000, , a lemon? Under Jane Bryant Quinn posed amending the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act to get you a better deal on lemons. American Motors is the only manufacturer offering a full warranty. If the car can't be repaired after several tries, you are entitled to a replacement or a refund. If the dealer resists, you may sue and drive the car while the case is being settled. If you win, the judge may order the dealer to pay your attorney's fees. Under the limited warranty offered by other automakers, the dealer is required only to make continuing attempts to repair not much Oil biz: A touch or Ui sney Los i4ngeles Times Service LONG BEACH, Calif. What is 10 acres in area, has about 100 holes drilled in it, is related to Disneyland and sits just offshore? Give up? A 10-acre oil island containing 100 wells and bearing cosmetic camouflage created by a Disneyland designer sits iust off the coast near here. There are actually four oil islands, Grissom, White, Chaffee and Freeman. They were finished in 1966 by a consortium of oil companies: Texaco, Exxon, Union, Mobil and Shell. The consortium called itself THUMS. Freeman is about 1 Vi miles from shore, but the other three islands sit a few hundred yards off the beach. They were named after astro Stocks continue to drift lower Auoclattd Press NEW YORK Stock prices drifted lower in quiet pre-holiday trading yesterday, closing out the market's worst week in more than three months. The Dow Jones average of 30 industrials dropped 3.72 to 831.69. The average's 15.16-point loss for the week was its poorest showing since it fell 23.30 points Feb. 13-17. New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) volume came to just 21.41 million shares, down from 28.41 million Thursday and the lightest total since a 20.13 million-share day April 4. Analysts said that the increase in prime lending rates by most large New Construction Contracts (8 C0UNTY PHILADELPHIA AREA) A A S0NDJFMAMJJAS0ND 1976 J I 1977 1 Sourc F W Dedg. Oivwon of McGrtw-H Economic report The Philadelphia construction industry climbed out of the winter doldrums in March, when $79 4 million in new contracts were sign"!. up from S49.S million in Fcbrwx y c-ii S29.4 million in January The March pace for new coutrat is help if the car is a real lemon. But you have additional rights that you may not know about, and that are not in the written warranty. During the period covered by the written warranty generally 12 months or 12,000 miles there is an "implied warranty" that the car will perform as promised. If the car self-destructs, or spends more time in the shop than out of it, you may sue under the implied warranty for a replacement or a refund. The implied warranty runs longer than the written warranty in just six states Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Vermont and West Virginia. There, if the transmission falls out of the car 14 months after you buy it, you can still sue for a free repair. But everywhere else, you are trip I s - w1 - i '? j" : r- fTCT banks and the government's report of a higher April trade deficit contributed to the selling pressure. Analysts said traders also were put off by the market's failure to maintain a rally at mid-day Thursday. The daily NYSE tally showed about four issues declining for every three that advanced. The exchange's composite index of all its listed common stocks slipped 0.10 to 54.14. Standard & Poor's index of 400 industrials dropped 0.25 to 106.78, and S&P's 500-stock composite index was down 0.22 at 96.58. Arlen Realty & Development led the active list as of the 4 p.m. close of the NYSE and fell 1 to 3. The 79.4 1 FMAM1IAS0ND I 1979 . 1 PhilaJelDhia Irouirer remained well below the level of March 1977, when contracts worth a total cf $117 8 million were signed. In March 1976, there were $66.8 million tn w contracts, and in March 1975, i 'lcit were J52.6 million in the Philadelphia area. law, you still might win out of luck; once the written warranty expires, the dealer owes you nothing. If a new car self-destructs and the dealer offers only to rebuild the engine, you may be able to sue. You paid for a new car, and a rebuilt engine isn't worth as much as the new one you paid for. The trouble with suing under implied warranties is that you have to give up the car for the duration. It's necessary to revoke ownership, return the car to the dealer, cancel the insurance and remove the plates. The suit may drag on for a year or more, while the dealer has your money and you are without the car. If the car was dealer-financed, it might be defensible to quit paying, nauts wno lost their lives in the U.S. space program. The one pictured above is Grissom Island. Built with 160,000 tons of granite rock from Catalina Island quarries and 900,000 yards of sand pumped from the ocean bottom, the islands were declared the outstanding engineering achievement of 1966 by the National Society of Professional Engineers. The islands' "buildings" usually attract the most visitor attention, according to W.F. Ellison, THUMS vice president. The structures were designed by a firm that contracted for several Disneyland rides. The 180-foot-tall structures are on large rails and can be moved around the perimeter of the island. This has resulted in calls from anxious island-watchers, telling THUMS in alarmed tones, "Hey, your building just moved." company estimated a $100 million fiscal-year loss as a result of writedowns and reserve provisions. None of the other issues on the active list moved as much as a point. The day's sharpest gain was posted by Carson Piric Scott, which jumped 3 to 22. The Chicago-based retailer said that it was not engaged in merger talks and that it did not know why the stock had risen so sharply. On the American Stock Exchange, the market value index rose 0.33 to 144.30. The NASDAQ composite index for the over-the-counter market added 0.04 to 119.86. ig banks m KDILIV 111 From Inquirer Wire Services Most of the nation's large banks raised their prime lending rates yesterday, primarily in response to the government's attempts to reduce inflation by restraining the growth of the nation's money supply. The increase in the prime rate the interest rate that banks charge on loans to their most credit-worthy customers to 8V2 percent from 8'4 percent was the second increase in less than a month, and it lifted the prevailing rate to its highest level since February 1975. The increased rate "reflects the continuation of sharply increased money market prices," David Jones, an economist with Aubrey G. Lan-ston & Co., said Although ii is :. .' : ;vtly tied to mortgages anri .. i , . runsumer loans, the prim. r.v. . - tr a psychological effect on uios,e seeking and granting consumer loans,-: which B under a federal law that limits the right of a lender to collect money for a defective product. But be prepared to have the dealer sue for payment, despite the law. If you got the loan from a bank or credit union, you generally will have to keep the payments up (check with an attorney on this). If you want to revoke ownership, talk to an attorney first to discover the law and procedures in your state. This is not a do-it-yourself project. The FTC will send your attorney a fact sheet on private legal remedies (write to Division of Product Reliability, FTC, Washington, 20580). Some lawyers discourage these suits, because the work is tedious and the fee often insufficient. "It's STOCK MARKET INDEXES 00W I0NES INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE 8 31.69 3.72 oo- NEW YORK STOCK EXCHANGE 54.14 "'O.lO raise prime have been on the rise in most areas. The Federal Reserve in recent months has been raising the interest rate it charges banks in an effort to limit the growth of the money supply, became technically the money supply expands whenever a loan is made. The increase in the prime rate and increases in other interest rates are part of the banks' attempt to pass on to their customers the higher cost of acquiring funds. "The prime rate is influenced very greatly by the cost of funds," said R. Gene Conaster, vice president and economic research director at Bank of America, the nation's largest bank. "The cost of funds to the banks has actually gone up faster than the prime rate." The increased demand for loans was a secondary consideration in indecision to increase the prime rale, allowing banks to raise the rate to take advantage of heightened corpo- regrettable but true," said FTC lawyer Lawrence Kanter, "that the only rights that are generally exercised are those that lawyers find it profitable to advocate." In some jurisdictions the court may make the dealer pay your attorney if you win; in others the bill is yours. Pertschuk has proposed that even under a limited warranty the manufacturer be required to repair or replace a lemon. He would also let you keep the car during the term of any lawsuit. If you would like to see those provisions enacted, write to Sen. Wendell Ford, head of the consumer subcommittee of the Senate Commerce Committee, Dirksen Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20510. $2.8 billion deficit in trade Oil, car imports grew in April Associated Press WASHINGTON Americans imported more oil and Japanese and German cars last month, putting the nation's trade balance $2.86 billion in the red, the Commerce Department said yesterday. The trade deficit, which is growing faster than it did last year, is regarded by most economists as a significant contributor to the decline in value of the dollar abroad and to higher prices domestically. April's deficit was the 23d consecutive monthly deficit and was the fourth largest on record, coming after a $2.79 billion trade gap in March. The United States increased its imports of such autos as Toyotas, Datsuns, Hondas and Volkswagens by 17 percent to $1.27 billion in April, the department said. Government economists attributed some of the increase to higher prices on the imported cars, but said most of it was a result of an increase in shipments. Oil imports, which are responsible for most of the trade imbalance, rose 15 percent to $3.36 billion after declining the month before. William Cox, a Commerce Department economist, said the increase could have been caused by oil users replenishing their supplies after heavy demand during a cold winter and the coal strike. Cox said that the large monthly deficits were expected to continue for the next several months, but he added, "We expect improvement in the second half of the year. I think that because of the surging growth of the American economy, we shouldn't be surprised imports are rising." He said all indicators of the economy moved up sharply in April but that "we think that is going to taper off in the second half of the year." Overall, imports increased from $13.69 billion in March to a record $14.50 billion in April, while exports rose from $10.91 billion in March to a record $11.63 billion in April. Among major exports increasing in April were food, soybeans, coal, aircraft, autos and gold. Other major imports increasing were coffee, alcoholic beverages, iron and steel, television sets, shoes and toys. In the first four months of the year, the trade deficit was $12.53 billion, equal to nearly half of the entire $26.5 billion deficit for last year. Contributing to the 1978 deficit is the largest-ever monthly deficit of $4.5 billion, which occurred in February. rate JL VVl C&lLIAJMI rate appetite for loans. The first large bank to raise its rate this time around was Continental Illinois National Bank & Trust Co. of Chicago, the nation's eighth-largest commercial bank, which announced its increase Thursday afternoon. By noon yesterday, most of the nation's 10 largest banks had followed suit, among them Bank of America, Chase Manhattan Bank, Manufacturers Hanover Trust Co., Morgan Guaranty, Chemical Bank, Bankers Trust Co. and Security Pacific National Bank. Many smaller banks, including First Pennsylvania, Philadelphia National, Girard and Fidelity banks in Philadelphia, did so as well till C in bank, the nation's second-lj:0i.'Kt b.ink and generally the lead-er in prime rate changes, said it would keep its rate at 8V4 percent until at least nextweek.

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