Arkansas Business headlines for Jan. 25

    7:22 AM, Jan 25, 2013   |    comments
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    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (Arkansas Business) -- Wall Street sees a mixed day of trading Thursday.

    The Dow Jones up 46 points to 13-825. The Nasdaq down 23 to 31-30. And S&P flat at about 14-92.

    Shares of Apple falling 12 percent yesterday after reporting a flat profit in its quarterly earnings.

    Investors are concerned about iPhone sales leveling out with no new products on the horizon. Despite continuing to report record profits, investors worried that Apple has little room left to grow.

    Other stocks of local interest: shares of Southwest Airlines up 9 cents to $11.45 after reporting better earnings despite the price of fuel going up.

    And railroad Union Pacific -- which has a major operation in North Little Rock -- falling $1.51 to $133.84. The railroad reporting weaker revenue than what analysts had been expecting.

    Elsewhere in Arkansas, earnings season continues.

    Simmons First National Corp. of Pine Bluff announcing announced fourth quarter net income of $8 million, up 27 percent from the same quarter last year.

    During the quarter, Simmons purchased Excel Bank of Sedalia, Mo., in an FDIC-assisted transaction. The company said the deal contributed $735,000 to fourth-quarter net income.

    The addition of that bank brought the number of Simmons branches to nine in Missouri and nine in Kansas.

    And J. B. Hunt Transport Services Inc. of Lowell reporting record fourth quarter 2012 profit of $84 million -- up about 16 percent during the same quarter last year.

    The logistics company attributed the profit growth to more revenue, effective cost controls and lower borrowing costs

    And big banking news late yesterday.

    Bank of the Ozarks Inc. of Little Rock expanding its North Carolina operations with a $67.8 million acquisition.

    Bank of the Ozarks buying the First National Bank of Shelby in a stock-cash transaction. The deal includes about $3.8 million in real estate Bank of the Ozarks is buying from affiliates of First National.

    At Dec. 31, First National had total assets of $857 million -- and that will increase Bank of the Ozarks' asset size by more than 20 percent.

    (Source: Arkansas Business)

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