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Business Highlights

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Discover 3Q profit slips, but tops Street view

BOSTON (AP) â¿¿ Discover Financial Services on Thursday reported a slight earnings decline in its fiscal third quarter, but the result easily beat Wall Street expectations as credit card use increased and more customers paid off their card balances on time.

Those gains helped offset higher expenses, including a legal bill from a settlement with regulators, and shares of Discover rose over 7 percent.

The Riverwoods, Ill.-based company reported net income of $621 million, or $1.21 per share, for the quarter ended Aug. 31, after paying preferred shareholders.

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Nike 1st quarter net income falls

BEAVERTON, Ore. (AP) â¿¿ Nike said Thursday its fiscal first-quarter net income fell 12 percent as higher sales of its clothing and footwear brands were offset by increased costs and ad spending.

Results beat expectations but shares fell 2 percent in aftermarket trading as investors worried about a slowing of futures orders, which indicate future demand.

Nike, like other consumer products makers, is facing high costs for materials and labor, as well as an uncertain economy in Europe and a slowdown in China. The Beaverton, Ore.-based company has raised prices and cut costs in response.

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Tempur-Pedic buying Sealy for about $228.6 million

NEW YORK (AP) â¿¿ Mattress rivals Tempur-Pedic and Sealy are becoming bedfellows.

Tempur-Pedic, the 20-year-old leader in foam mattresses, is buying more-than-a century-old rival Sealy for about $228.6 million in cash.

The acquisition comes as competition has increased in the mattress industry, with makers stepping up their marketing and promotions to help lure cost-conscious consumers into making big purchases.

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Campbell closing plants as soup consumption falls

NEW YORK (AP) â¿¿ Campbell Soup Co. is closing two U.S. plants and cutting more than 700 jobs as it looks to trim costs amid declining consumption of its canned soups.

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