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BUSINESS NOTES UCB AWARDS 175 COMMUNITY GRANTS.

Byline: - Staff and wire reports

As a ``birthday present'' from United California Bank, which began operating this week, 175 community organizations around California will receive grants totaling $700,000.

United California Bank, formed from the merger of Sanwa Bank and Tokai Bank, is the third-largest bank headquartered in the state.

UCB executives presented donations to representatives of some of the organizations at bank branch locations in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Fresno and Irvine.

The donations went to groups focusing on education, health and welfare, community development and the arts.

GM recalls trucks for belt defects

DETROIT - General Motors Corp. said Friday it is recalling about 10,000 Chevrolet and GMC full-sized trucks to repair a problem with the seat belt retractor.

The vehicles involved are 2001 model year Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra full-size extended-cab pickup trucks and Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban and GMC Yukon, Yukon Denali, Yukon XL, and Yukon XL Denali full-sized sport utility vehicles built between Sept. 27 and Oct. 3.

According to GM, a component in the seat belt retractor in the second- and third-row seats may fracture. That could prevent the safety belt retractor from locking or securing a child seat in a crash.

There have been no reports of accidents or injuries related to the problem, GM said.

Notices were sent to affected owners Tuesday, GM spokesman Mike Morrissey said.

Harrah's earnings fall short of goals

LAS VEGAS - Shares of Harrah's Entertainment Inc. dropped 17 percent in trading Friday after the gambling company said it will fall short of Wall Street's second-quarter estimates.

The Las Vegas-based company expects to report adjusted earnings per share of 46 to 50 cents for the quarter ending June 30. That's up from quarterly earnings of 40 cents last year, but below analysts' estimates of 55 cents per share.

The company on Thursday cited two primary reasons for the earnings shortfall: a lower-than-expected table-games hold percentage at the Rio in Las Vegas and accelerating weakness in retail and walk-in business stemming from the nation's economic slowdown.

America West has 2nd-quarter loss

TEMPE - The parent company for America West Airlines announced that it expects the carrier to post a net loss of $40 million to $50 million in the second quarter because of continued weakness in the U.S. economy and high fuel prices.

The estimate Thursday by America West Holdings Corp. includes special charges announced earlier. Without those charges, the second quarter net loss is expected to be $20 million to $30 million.

One bright spot for the airline during the quarter is that it has filled a higher percentage of seats than most competitors and its load factor has increased while other airlines have experienced declines.

Air rage is called a major problem

WASHINGTON - By failing to deal with air rage, airlines and government agencies are putting air travelers increasingly at risk, say flight attendants, who allege 4,000 incidents a year of unacceptable passenger behavior.

At Reagan National Airport, the flight attendants issued an air rage report card, giving failing grades to airlines, the Justice Department and the Federal Aviation Administration.

Those agencies have failed to force airlines to report all air rage incidents and rarely enforce laws against rowdy passengers, Patricia Friend, president of the Association of Flight Attendants, said Friday.
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Copyright 2001, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jul 7, 2001
Words:545
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