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Applied DNA supplier for Defense

The U.S. Department of Defense has said it is now requiring all of its microcircuit suppliers to embed the high-tech devices with anticounterfitting stamps manufactured by Applied DNA Sciences Inc. of Stony Brook. The move, announced this month, could be a boon for the struggling startup, which posted a $1.4 million loss this week for its third fiscal quarter. Applied DNA's president and chief executive, James A. Hayward, said the requirement will impact hundreds of companies, including some of the world's largest microcircuit makers. "We are already receiving numerous inquiries," Hayward said Thursday in a letter to investors. Applied DNA, with 25 employees, marks microchips and other products with plant DNA that cannot be duplicated. The company has struggled to turn a profit since its founding in 2002. Its stock jumped about 22 percent Thursday, to 7 cents a share, after Hayward told investors about the Department of Defense's requirement. -- Joe Ryan

Aeroflex net income at $17.2M

Aeroflex Holding Corp. Inc., a Plainview-based maker of high-tech communication equipment, said it swung from a loss to a profit during the last quarter despite lower sales. The company's net income was $17.2 million during its fourth fiscal quarter of 2012, which included April, May and June. That's compared to a $21.6 million loss for the same period last year, when the company's bottom line took a $34.2 million hit from one-time debt-related expenses. Sales during the recent quarter, however, dropped to $184.7 million, down 7 percent from last year. The slowing revenue stemmed largely from a drop in sales in the company's wireless test unit. Aeroflex, which derives about 30 percent of its revenue from the U.S. government, built some of the hardware aboard Mars rover Curiosity, which landed on the Red Planet last week. It employs 2,800 worldwide, including 288 on Long Island. -- Joe Ryan


Oil reserves may be released

The White House is "dusting off old plans" for a potential release of oil reserves to dampen rising gasoline prices and prevent high energy costs from undermining the success of Iran sanctions, a source with knowledge of the situation said Thursday. U.S. officials will monitor market conditions over the coming weeks, watching whether gasoline prices fall after the Sept. 3 Labor Day holiday, as they historically do, the source said. It was too early to say how big a drawdown would be from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve and, potentially, other international reserves if a decision to proceed was made. Oil prices have surged in recent weeks, with Brent crude prices closing in on $120 a barrel, up sharply from around $90 a barrel in July. The United States and other Group of Eight countries studied a potential oil release in the spring but shelved the plans when prices dropped. -- Reuters

Bid occult goodbye on eBay

Making a profit on the occult arts? Cultivating a loyal customer base for potions, magic spells and psychic readings? Not on eBay, you're not. In its 2012 Fall Seller Update, the online marketplace said it was banning all sales of supernatural goods and services, exiling its witchy and wizardly clientele to the wilds of Craigslist and other Web-based sellers. Among the prohibited items: "advice; spells; curses; hexing; conjuring; magic services; prayers; blessings; Psychic, Tarot, Reiki, and other metaphysical readings & services; magic potions; healing sessions." EBay representatives did not immediately respond to questions as to why Harry Potter wannabes were no longer welcome or whether they contributed substantially to eBay transactions. But beginning Aug. 30, attempts to list such enchantments for sale will be blocked, according to the website. -- Los Angeles Times

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