Hannaford announces new interactive website

Scarborough-based grocer Hannaford Supermarkets unveiled a new website this week with features like an interactive shopping list.

“The new Hannaford.com has a simple, clean look and is easier to navigate, with many customer-friendly features,” said Mark Bradeen, the company’s manager of promotions and online loyalty marketing in a news release. “We’re especially excited about the powerful online shopping list and the personalization we can offer customers online.”

The company aims to have 50 to 60 coupons available online, a new recipe section and enhanced pharmacy features. Shoppers can also get e-mail notifications about their favorite products.

The site has been in production for more than a year.

Marketing campaigns are promoting the new Hannaford.com as well as a contest for a chance to win prizes such as free groceries for a year and Apple iPod Touch media players.


Palm settles shareholder suit over HP acquisition

Palm Inc. says that it has settled a class action suit brought by shareholders who argued they did not get the best deal when directors approved the company’s acquisition by Hewlett-Packard Co. for $1.4 billion in cash.

The Sunnyvale, Calif.-based company did not disclose the terms of the settlement, but said in a securities filing that it “will not affect the amount of the merger consideration that Palm stockholders are entitled to receive in the merger.”

Palm shares added a penny to close at $5.68 Wednesday. HP in April announced it would pay $5.70 for every Palm common share.


Germany won’t give GM aid for its Opel division

Germany on Wednesday rejected General Motors’ request for aid from the federal government for its Opel unit, saying the U.S. automaker had enough funds to pull its subsidiary through.

The decision by Economy Minister Rainer Bruederle came just days after Germany announced a plan to cut public spending and reduce the deficit, and denied GM more than 1.1 billion euros, or $1.2 billion, in loan guarantees.

But Chancellor Angela Merkel insisted that “the last word on the future of Opel naturally has not been spoken.”


Mortgage applications to buy property drop

The number of customers applying for a mortgage to purchase property fell to the lowest level in 13 years last week.

Purchase volume declined 5.7 percent and is at its lowest point since February 1997, the Mortgage Bankers Association said Wednesday.

Overall mortgage application volume, which includes loans for purchases and refinancings, dropped by 12.2 percent during the week ended June 4, compared with the previous week. Refinance volume tumbled 14.3 percent.


Wholesalers inventories rise fourth straight month

Inventories held by wholesalers rose for a fourth straight month in April while sales rose for a 13th consecutive time. Both gains were encouraging signs for a sustained economic recovery.

Wholesale inventories increased 0.4 percent last month after a 0.7 percent gain in March, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. Sales increased 0.7 percent in April, helped by higher demand for autos, lumber, computers and electrical equipment. The rise followed a 2.4 percent surge in March.

The hope is that a steady rise in demand will prompt businesses to step up orders and restock depleted shelves. That would give a boost to factories and prompt them to increase hiring.


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