New Brunswick premier, Gov. LePage talk business

SAINT JOHN, New Brunswick – New Brunswick Premier David Alward and Maine Gov. Paul LePage plan to hold a public discussion on business sector opportunities.

Thursday’s meeting in Saint John is sponsored by the New Brunswick city’s Board of Trade.

Its president, Imelda Gilman, said New Brunswick has always shared a unique connection with the New England states. Gilman said it’s time to have a 21st-century discussion about business and energy opportunities for New Brunswick and Maine as a region.

Participants will be able to attend forums focusing on energy and expanding business markets.

Cost of home heating oil inches up another penny

AUGUSTA  – The cost of home heating oil in Maine has inched up by a penny in the past week to an average of $3.76 per gallon.

The Governor’s Energy Office said Monday’s price was 25 cents a gallon higher than a year ago.

As usual, the lowest prices are in southern Maine and the highest are in northern Maine.

Maine energy officials said the cost of kerosene was the same as a week ago at $4.19 a gallon.

Propane was up 3 cents from a week ago, to $2.67 a gallon.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration last week projected that heating costs in households that use oil will be higher this winter than any winter on record.

Retail price of gasoline drops to $3.79 in Maine

AUGUSTA – The average retail price of a gallon a gas has dropped to $3.79 in Maine, according to the price-monitoring website MaineGasPrices.com. That’s still 12 cents above the national average.

Prices in Maine are now nearly 16 cents per gallon lower than a month ago, yet remain more than 24 cents per gallon higher than at the same time last year.

A company analyst said there hasn’t been such a significant price drop in one week since May 2011.

Maine firm makes it easier for diners to track lobster

MILBRIDGE – A Maine company is making it easier for lobster lovers to track their meal.

Dorr Lobster Co. has been putting identification tags on lobsters shipped out of its Milbridge facility for retail sale since the summer.

The tags, which can be kept on during cooking so restaurant customers see them, include the company’s phone number, website address, and a tracking number that diners can look up online to find out which fisherman caught their lobster and when it was caught.

Chad Dorr, business manager for the family-owned business, told the Bangor Daily News the goals are to better market the product and ensure customers that their dinner was harvested sustainably.

He said if customers know more about a meal, it could end up fetching a higher price.

Stock market waffles, waits for presidential election

NEW YORK – The stock market is waiting for the presidential election as much as anyone.

The U.S. stock market struggled for direction Monday. All three major indexes waffled between gains and losses before closing slightly higher. Investors were underwhelmed by earnings reports from toymaker Hasbro, clothing maker VF Corp., regional bank SunTrust and others.

Investors are wary of making big moves before they know who’s going to be the next president.

“They need to know the playing field before they get out there and play,” said Jeff Savage, regional chief investment officer for Wells Fargo Private Bank in Portland, Oregon.

The Dow Jones industrial average ended virtually flat. It inched up 2.38 points, or 0.02 percent, to close at 13,345.89. A late rise erased a 108-point deficit in the Dow.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index was also little changed, edging up 0.62 point to 1,433.81. The Nasdaq composite index rose 11.34 to 3,016.96.

– From news service reports