Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

World of Business

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

World of Business

Article excerpt

PRICELINE LAYING OFF 87; CFO MILLER LEAVING

Priceline.com, the Internet-based, name-your-own-price system for travel and other services, is cutting 16 percent of its work force and said that chief financial officer Heidi G. Miller is leaving after only eight months on the job.

The Norwalk, Conn.-based company made these announcements in conjunction with its third-quarter earnings report, in which it reported a loss of 1 cent per share. The results met lowered analyst expectations.

After closing at $6.84, up 66 cents, in regular trading on the Nasdaq Stock Market, shares of Priceline slipped to $5.19 during the after-hours session.

Priceline said it was laying off 87 people from its 535-member work force. The layoffs and other changes would result in a fourth-quarter charge of about $9 million.

The company also said Miller was leaving to "pursue opportunities and apply her talents in a more established business environment." Bob Mylod, the senior vice president of finance, will replace her.

Miller joined the company earlier this year, leaving behind the CFO slot at banking giant Citigroup.

MORTGAGE RATES UP SLIGHTLY IN CURRENT WEEK

Rates on 30-year and 15-year mortgages edged up this week, but still hovered below the 8 percent mark.

The average interest rate on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose to 7.73 percent for the week ending today, up from 7.68 percent reached the previous week, according to a survey released yesterday by Freddie Mac, the mortgage company. A year ago, the rate on 30-year mortgages stood at 7.84 percent.

Last week's 30-year rate of 7.68 percent was the lowest since Nov. 12, 1999, and was a far cry from mid-May, when 30-year rates hit a five-year high of 8.64 percent.

Fifteen-year mortgages, a popular option for refinancing, climbed to an average 7. …

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