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CVD profits, sales increase


An intensive effort to turn its backlog into completed orders resulted in sharp increases in sales and profits, CVD Equipment Corp., a Ronkonkoma maker of nanotechnology tools, said Tuesday. The company nearly doubled its sales in 2011 and saw an even larger increase in profits. CVD said it earned $3.7 million on revenue of $30.9 million, up from the previous year's profit of $531,772 on sales of $16.5 million. For the fourth quarter, income was $1 million on sales of $8.4 million, compared to $375,000 on sales of $5.1 million a year ago. CVD makes tools used to create atomic-level layers of conductive materials on such products as computer chips, solar cells and light-emitting diodes. The company said it hopes a move to a newly purchased Central Islip building, twice the size of its current facility, will enable it to increase hiring and production by midyear. -- Joseph Mallia







Mixed news not dousing hopes


Americans seem to be holding onto a rosier view of the U.S. economy as they focus on the good in a flood of mixed economic news. Gas prices are up, but the stock market is, too. Home prices are down, but so is unemployment. "The resilience suggests that jobs remain a more important concern . . . than gasoline prices," said Mark Vitner, an economist at Wells Fargo Securities. Gas prices have risen almost every day this month, yet the Consumer Confidence Index for March held nearly steady at 70.2, according to the research group The Conference Board. February's reading of 71.6 was the highest in a year. -- AP



Airline reservations still glitchy


United Airlines passengers are having difficulty getting a reservations agent on the phone and are experiencing other glitches more than three weeks after a computer switchover was supposed to make things better. There were widespread reports of passengers waiting on hold up to an hour to fix ticketing problems. Many reported that they couldn't get through at all. Odd balances were showing up in frequent-flier accounts. The airline says it has solved most of the frequent-flier problems and it is working to reduce hold times. The problems began March 3 with a computer switch that was part of the airline's merger with Continental. -- AP







Apple boss in talks in China


Apple Inc. chief executive Tim Cook has jetted into China for talks with government officials as he seeks to clear up a pile of problems in the firm's biggest growth market, from its contested iPad trademark to treatment of local labor. Cook is on his first trip to the country since taking over from late co-founder Steve Jobs in August, keeping to a closely guarded agenda that has included talks on Monday with Beijing's mayor and a visit to one of Apple's two stores in the capital. Cook has a thicket of problems to cut through in China, which is both Apple's most important manufacturing hub and biggest potential market. -- Reuters



Poll: Unity by email, social nets


Most of the world is interconnected thanks to email and social networking sites, according to a new poll. Eighty-five percent of people around the globe who are connected online send and receive emails, and 62 percent use social networking sites, particularly in Indonesia, Argentina and Russia, which have the highest percentage of users. More than eight in 10 Indonesians and about 75 percent of people in Argentina, Russia and South Africa visit social media sites, the new Ipsos/Reuters poll showed. Although Facebook and other popular social networking sites were founded in the United States, the percentage of users here was lower at six in 10, and in Japan it fell to 35 percent, the lowest of the 24 countries in the global survey. -- Reuters


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