Morning Briefs

Article excerpt

MOODY'S LOWERS WINN-DIXIE RATING; OUTLOOK NEGATIVE

Moody's Investment Service downgraded its debt rating for Winn-Dixie Stores Inc. notes and placed the ratings on a negative outlook following the company's earnings report and announcement this week that the Jacksonville-based supermarket would retool the company and make up to $100 million in cuts.

The rating affects up to $300 million in senior notes, which were downgraded to B1 from Ba2. The 8.875 percent notes are a revolving credit facility that currently has no outstanding debt against it, the company said. In a release Friday, Winn-Dixie said it may re-evaluate its financing strategy pending an analysis of its core market.

JACKSONVILLE MAN TO MANAGE RESTORATION PROGRAM

Jacksonville-based engineering and construction management company PBS&J appointed Charles Padera to be the program manager for the Everglades Partners Joint Venture. The effort is a collaboration between PBS&J and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Program. According to PBS&J, Padera has 24 years of experience in water resource planning and management and most recently served as deputy program manager for the joint venture.

US AIRWAYS SHORTENS FOURTH QUARTER LOSS TO $98 MILLION

RICHMOND, Va. -- US Airways Group Inc. cut its losses sharply in the fourth quarter, though the airline's top executive warned that it continues to lag behind financial goals.

The Arlington-based company reported a loss of $98 million, or $1.82 per share, in the quarter ended Dec. 31, down from a loss of $794 million, or $11.67 per share, in the year-ago period.

The company's pretax loss for the fourth quarter of 2003 -- excluding a $30 million gain from selling its investment in the Hotwire travel site -- was $129 million. …