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Comcast sees profit jump

Comcast, the country’s largest cable TV company, beat expectations with its second-quarter results, helped by the newly acquired NBC Universal business.

The Philadelphia-based company reported net income of $1.02 billion, or 37 cents per share, for the April to June period. That’s up 16 percent from $884 million, or 31 cents per share, a year ago.

Revenue rose 51 percent to $14.3 billion. Analysts were expecting $13.7 billion. Revenue from last year’s quarter didn’t include NBC Universal.

P&G foresees no growth

Procter & Gamble Co. Chief Executive Robert McDonald says his company is preparing for a period of little or no economic growth in developed countries.

McDonald told reporters Wednesday in Singapore that he’s concerned about the lack of growth in the U.S. He said his company’s sales from October last year through to March this year in North America, Western Europe and Japan were flat.

P&G is scheduled to announce its April-June earnings Friday.

BofA may cut loan principal

Bank of America Corp. is pursuing a settlement that could reduce loan balances for struggling homeowners in exchange for a release from legal claims against the Charlotte bank, a person familiar with the matter said Wednesday.

The talks are separate from ongoing discussions between five major lenders, including Bank of America, and federal officials and state attorneys general. It’s unclear when either set of talks will conclude and whether they will result in agreements.

Metro unemployment rises

Unemployment rose in more than 90 percent of U.S. cities in June, mirroring a national slowdown in hiring.

The Labor Department says the unemployment rate rose in 345 large metro areas. It dropped in 20 cities and was unchanged in seven. That’s worse than May, when the rate rose in only 210 cities and a sharp reversal from April, when unemployment actually fell in nearly all metro areas.

The rate jumped to 9.2 percent in June in the area that includes Luzerne County, matching the national rate.

Water company profit up

Aqua America Inc. reported Wednesday that second-quarter net income increased 26 percent to $37.6 million, or 27 cents per share.

The Bryn Mawr company said earnings were boosted by a one-time $3.5 million state tax benefit from the 100 percent bonus depreciation allowed under a federal tax-relief act. Without that, income increased 14 percent to $34.1 million, or 25 cents a share.

The company said quarterly revenue increased 5.5 percent from $178.4 million last year to $188.2 million this year.

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