IN BRIEF

Sun Country will seek bankruptcy protection

Vacation-oriented Sun Country Airlines will file for bankruptcy protection but will keep flying to Southern Nevada and other destinations.

The airline represents just a fraction of passenger traffic at McCarran International Airport but is critical for air service to Laughlin, hauling roughly 45 percent of fly-in traffic to Laughlin Bullhead International Airport in Bullhead City, Ariz.

Laughlin airport director David Gaines said Sun Country represented about 226,000 arrivals and departures by charter in 2007. That translates to about 3.7 percent of the 3 million people who visited Laughlin during that time. Sun Country’s 77,150 arrivals and departures through August at McCarran represent less than one-half of 1 percent of total scheduled traffic.

NEW YORK

Oil prices decline as crisis crimps demand

Oil prices plunged below $90 a barrel Monday, coming within reach of year-ago levels as a widening financial maelstrom spreads overseas and crimps global demand for energy.

A barrel of oil has not been this cheap in eight months, suggesting that the climate in which oil soared to unheard of levels is coming to an abrupt end.

Light, sweet crude for November delivery fell $6.07, or 6.4 percent, to settle at $87.81 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It was crude’s fourth straight negative session and its lowest settlement since Feb. 6.

NEW YORK

Credit markets stay stuck amid bailouts

The jammed credit markets barely budged Monday as governments around the world scrambled to prop up their failing banks and investors waited for details on how, exactly, the Treasury will go about buying $700 billion of U.S. banks’ mortgage assets.

The London Interbank Offered Rate, or LIBOR, for 3-month dollar loans eased only slightly to 4.29 percent from Friday’s nearly nine-month high of 4.33 percent. The overnight LIBOR for dollar loans — which dropped Friday to a nearly four-year low of just below 2 percent, the Federal Reserve’s target overnight rate — edged back up to 2.25 percent.

ATLANTIC CITY

Casinos may postpone blanket smoking ban

With the economy crumbling and revenues plunging, the city may put off the Oct. 15 start of a blanket ban on smoking in casinos to avoid further losses.

The ban, opposed by casino owners but supported by workers, was approved in April before Wall Street melted down. The City Council is scheduled Wednesday to consider a delay.

HARRISBURG, Pa.

Mars completes deal to acquire Wrigley

Mars Inc. closed its $23 billion deal to purchase chewing-gum giant Wm. Wrigley Jr. Co., the companies said Monday, making the combined business the world’s largest candy maker.

The deal brings together household names: Wrigley, a landmark in Chicago where the company began in 1891; and Mars, the privately held maker of Snickers and Skittles and M&Ms.

As of Monday’s market close, Wrigley’s stock ceased trading publicly. The owner of Orbit chewing gum became a subsidiary of Mars. WASHINGTON

Interest rates decline in Treasury auction

Interest rates on short-term Treasury bills fell in Monday’s auction, with yields on three-month bills falling to the lowest level on record, reflecting continued strains in credit markets.

The Treasury Department auctioned $26 billion in three-month bills at a discount rate of 0.46 percent, down from 1.1 percent last week. It auctioned $27 billion in six-month bills at a discount rate of 1.1 percent, down from 1.54 percent.

As stocks swoon, prices for Treasurys increase

As the Dow Jones industrial average dropped below 10,000, Treasury prices rose.

The 10-year note rose 0.97 points to 104.28 and yielded 3.45 percent, down from 3.60 percent.

The 30-year bond rose 1.59 points to 108.78 and yielded 3.99 percent, down from 4.09 percent.

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