Personal Touch Home Care will cease operations in Ohio as of April 20, according to a Worker Adjustment Retraining Notification (WARN) Act notice filed with the state with this week.

The company did not provide a reason for the shutdown.

Locally, Personal Touch employs 76 people at its Independence office and 21 at its Wooster office. Its website also lists a satellite office in Fairlawn. The filing said the company it anticipates 257 permanent layoffs statewide.

Spray Products Corp. has officially taken ownership of the former Valspar/Plasti-Kote 270,000 square-foot facility at 1000 Lake Road in Medina.

The building was the largest vacant facility in Medina and had been empty since 2016. Spray Products plans to have its distribution functions in operation by early April, with manufacturing set to start in mid-May.

Plymouth Meeting, Pa.-based Spray Products provides specialized aerosol and liquid packaging services for small and large businesses, including research and development, formulation, manufacturing, packaging, and distribution. The company was founded in 1958.

Team NEO helped the company obtain a JobsOhio $750,000 building improvements grant and a Phase II Environmental Assessment grant. Financing for the acquisition is being provided through a $5.5 million bond by the Development Finance Authority of Summit County, through its relationship with the Medina County Port Authority.

Medina chipped in with an estimated $40,000 grant for job creation. The Ohio Rail Commission also contributed a $52,000 grant.

The company has committed to creating 40 new positions with a goal of reaching 100 employees in the near future. It also will be a part of the city’s rail consortium.

FirstEnergy Corp. expects to deactivate a large coal-fired power plant in West Virginia by year’s end that can power 1.3 million homes.

The 1,300 megawatt Pleasants Power Station along the Ohio River in Willow Island, W.Va., will be closed or sold by Jan. 1, 2019, FirstEnergy said Friday in a news release.

The power plant is owned by FirstEnergy subsidiary Allegheny Energy Supply and has about 190 employees.

The plant deactivation is subject to review by PJM Interconnection, the regional transmission organization responsible for electric grid reliability where the power plant is located, the utility said.

FirstEnergy subsidiary Mon Power filed a plan in March 2017 seeking regulatory approval to acquire the Pleasants Power Station. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission rejected the proposal on Jan. 12.

The utility said in a news release the acquisition would have resolved a projected 10-year energy capacity shortfall and decreased electric bills for customers.

The Public Service Commission of West Virginia had approved the sale subject to significant conditions, FirstEnergy said.

Those conditions, combined with the FERC rejection, make the proposed transfer unworkable, the utility said.

“Closing Pleasants is a very difficult choice because of the talented employees dedicated to reliable operation of the station and the communities who have supported the facility for many years.

“But the recent federal and West Virginia decisions leave FirstEnergy no reasonable option but to expeditiously move forward with deactivation of the plant,” Charles E. Jones, FirstEnergy president and chief executive officer, said in a news release. “We will continue to pursue opportunities to sell the plant while planning for deactivation.”

Affected employees may be eligible to receive severance benefits if the plant closes, FirstEnergy said.

Pleasants Power Station began making electricity in 1979.

It has two 650-megawatt coal-powered generating units.

Beginning in 2016, FirstEnergy announced the sale or closure of 2,471 megawatts of generation in neighboring states Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia.

Once the Pleasants plant is deactivated, FirstEnergy said it will own or control generating capacity totaling about 14,795 megawatts of power from coal, nuclear, natural gas and renewable energy plants in Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, New Jersey, Virginia and Illinois.

FirstEnergy said it continues to complete the strategic review of its remaining competitive generating fleet.

J.M. Smucker Co. is pouring sugar on thousands of employees in the form of $1,000 bonuses.

The Orrville food company announced the employee bonuses as part of its third quarter earnings report released Friday morning.

Corporate earnings were significantly higher than a year ago in large part because of federal tax reform that lowered corporate tax rates. Smucker also increased its earnings outlook for the year.

The company said it is giving $1,000 one-time bonuses to nearly 5,000 employees, will make $1 million in charitable contributions, and will contribute an additional $20 million to its employee pension plan because of federal tax reform.

Smucker reported net income of $831.3 million, or $7.32 per share, on revenue of $1.9 billion for the quarter ending Jan. 31. The bulk of the net income increase was due to a nonrecurring benefit from recently enacted federal tax reform, the company said.

The company had adjusted earnings of $2.50 a share for the quarter, up 25 percent from a year ago.

A year ago, Smucker reported net income of $134.6 million, or $1.16 a share, on revenue of $1.87 billion.

Third quarter revenue and profit were boosted by strong coffee and pet food sales, while U.S. food sales declined.

The company announced results before the stock market opened.

Earnings and revenue beat analyst estimates.

Shares rose Friday afternoon after dipping in the day, closing up $1.81, or 1.5 percent, at $124.02.

“We had a strong third quarter, with sales growth for key brands in every business and strong earnings per share growth fueled by the benefits of U.S. income tax reform and ongoing cost discipline,” Mark Smucker, chief executive officer, said in a statement.

“These results reflect our commitment to delivering top and bottom line growth and supporting our portfolio of iconic and emerging brands. In addition, the benefits of income tax reform provide incremental fuel to invest in our growth initiatives and support our employees and communities as well as opportunities to increase cash returned to shareholders.”

Third quarter coffee sales increased $12.9 million to $550.5 million compared to a year ago.

U.S. food sales fell $5.7 million to $511.6 million compared to a year ago.

Pet food sales in the United States rose by $11 million to $561.9 million compared to the third quarter of 2017.

International sales totaled $279.3 million, up $6.3 million from a year ago.

The company said it now expects to have adjusted earnings of $8.20 to $8.30 a share for the full 2018 fiscal year compared to previous estimates of $7.75 to $7.90 a share.

Full year revenue is expected to be flat to down slightly compared to fiscal 2017.

Smucker food, coffee and pet food brands include Smucker’s, Folger’s, Jif, Crisco, Dunkin’ Donuts, Cafe Buselo, Pillsbury, Milk-Bone, Meow Mix, 9Lives and others.

Summa Health lost money last year, but the Akron-based health system didn’t lose as much as it predicted.

For the 12 months ending Dec. 31, Summa said its operating loss was $28 million, according to public financial disclosures posted this week on a website for bond holders.

In late June, Summa Interim CEO Dr. Cliff Deveny warned that the hospital was projecting a $60 million loss for the year and that if the hospital didn’t get on solid financial footing following turmoil that began earlier in the year, the hospital could be the target of a potential sale.

However, in mid-November, when Summa’s credit worthiness was downgraded by a national credit rating agency and the financial outlook of the system was revised from stable to negative, Deveny said the system expected to end the year with a loss of $35 million.

The hospital stemmed that loss by $7 million. By comparison, the hospital made $29.5 million for the year in 2016.

Summa Interim Chief Financial Officer Thomas O’Neill said the health system was “more aggressive in right-sizing the organization” with cuts in staffing and operations during the second and third quarter of the year.

In June, Summa officials said they would eliminate about 300 positions — about half of which were filled at the time — and would discontinue and consolidate some services.

In November and December, the health system saw “a little more activity” though “I wouldn’t say we were extremely profitable,” O’Neill said.

O’Neill said the flu and other respiratory illnesses spiked near the end of December, accounting for some of the uptick in volume. Elective surgeries, which tend to increase toward the end of the year when patients meet their yearly insurance deductibles, also were up, but “I don’t think it was anything dramatic,” he said.

For 2017, the hospital’s revenue was $1.31 billion, down 3.9 percent or $53.1 million from $1.36 billion in 2016.

In its filing with the Electronic Municipal Market Access website, Summa said surgical cases increased 2 percent last year. All other types of care were down, including inpatient admissions (9 percent), emergency-room visits (6 percent), outpatient visits (6 percent) and observation cases (7 percent).

Summa’s total employment number is about 7,000, spokesman Mike Bernstein said. That reflects about 250 job reductions systemwide last year.

About 295 former Summa employees transitioned to a new joint venture Feb. 6 for home health care and hospice services. Another 55 employees were not included in the transition, though some found other jobs with the health system, Bernstein said.

Ben Sutton, Summa senior vice president for strategy and performance management, said Thursday the new joint venture was not “about right-sizing in any way and not part of any reduction plan. That really is about an opportunity to partner with someone for growth.”

Deveny was hired as Summa’s interim president and chief executive officer last March following the resignation of CEO Dr. Thomas Malone amid demands by hundreds of doctors for a change in leadership.

The situation was exacerbated with the abrupt changeover in Summa’s emergency room physician staffing in January 2017 and subsequent loss of accreditation to train emergency medicine resident physicians. The hospital’s overall probation of its residency programs was lifted by an accreditation agency in October and hospital officials say they are determined to get the emergency medicine residency program reinstated.

Bernstein said the search for a permanent Summa CEO is ongoing. Deveny has said he is a candidate.

Medical writer Betty Lin-Fisher can be reached at 330-996-3724 or [email protected]. Follow her @blinfisherABJ on Twitter or http://www.facebook.com/BettyLinFisherABJ and see all her stories at http://www.ohio.com/betty

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn.: Three of four former employees of truck stop chain Pilot Flying J who have been on trial since November have been convicted in connection with a rebate scam.

News outlets report former company President Mark Hazelwood and former account representative Heather Jones were found guilty of conspiracy on Thursday.

Former company Vice President Scott “Scooter” Wombold and former account representative Karen Mann were found not guilty of conspiracy.

Hazelwood and Wombold were convicted of wire fraud.

The trial has been going on in U.S. District Court in Chattanooga.

Pilot Flying J is controlled by the family of Cleveland Browns owner Jimmy Haslam and Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam. The Haslams haven’t been charged with any wrongdoing. The governor has not been involved in the company in recent years.

MONDAY, FEB. 19

Wadsworth Kiwanis — 5 p.m., Sonnets Cafe, 117 College St., Wadsworth. Information: Ellen Martin, 330-818-9809 or email [email protected].

TUESDAY, FEB. 20

Akron Rotary Club -— Noon. Portage Country Club, 240 N. Portage Path, Akron, 44303. Lunch $13. Information: http://www.akronrotary.org.

Toastmasters Akron 151 — 6:30-8 p.m., Summa St. Thomas Hospital, 444 N. Main St., Akron. Information: Nick Lach, 330-205-6117, email [email protected] or http://151.toastmastersclubs.org.

Barberton Kiwanis — 11:45 a.m., First Presbyterian Church, 636 Park St., Barberton. Information: Ellen Martin, 330-818-9809 or email [email protected].

Bridgestone Toastmasters Club — 11:45 a.m. to 12:45 p.m., Bridge­stone Americas Technical Center, 10 E. Firestone Blvd., Akron. Information: http://3315.­toastmastersclubs.org.

Northeast Ohio Business Alliance — 7:30-9 a.m., Real Estate Capital Partners, 8821 Freeway Drive, Macedonia. Information: [email protected].

AmSpirit Business Connections, Fairlawn Chapter — 7:45-9 a.m., Acme Fresh Market No. 1, 1835 W. Market St., Akron. For information, call 330-835-4005 or email [email protected].

Medina Business Network — 7:45-8:45 a.m., Buffalo Wild Wings, 5050 Eastpointe Drive, Medina. Information: [email protected].

International Referral Network, Greater Akron Chapter — 7:45 a.m., 12 E. Exchange St., Akron. Information: Michael Brink, 330-221-8576.

Wadsworth Toastmasters — 6:45 p .m., Buehlers Fresh Foods, 175 Great Oaks Trail, Wadsworth. Information: [email protected].

Women Encouraging Business Success (WEBS) — 10 a.m., Corner Cup Coffeehouse, 3019 Graham Road, #1, Stow. Information: Natalie Fox, 216-533-7092 or email [email protected].

Sustainable Funding for Nonprofits — 10 a.m., Hudson Library & Historical Society, 96 Library St. Presented by Barb Greene, owner and principal consultant with CommonGood Consulting. Inc. Free. For more information, call 330-653-6658, ext. 1010.

Entrepreneurship Series: Managing a Multi-generational Workforce — 6:30 p.m., Hudson Library & Historical Society, 96 Library St. Presented by Deborah A. Easton, communication Skills consultant. Free. For more information, call 330-653-6658, ext. 1010.

WEDNESDAY, FEB. 21

International Referral Network, Akron West Chapter — 11:45 a.m., Akron Family Restaurant, 250 W. Market St., Akron. Reservations required: Dan Keenan, 330-334-0533.

A.M. Akron Toastmasters Club — 8 a.m., Fairlawn Country Club, 200 N. Wheaton Road, Akron. Breakfast $6. Information: http://www.­amakrontoastmasters.com.

Magic City Kiwanis — 6:45 a.m., Thano’s Restaurant, 71 Fifth St. SE, Barberton. Information: Ellen Martin, 330-818-9809 or email [email protected].

Copley Fairlawn Kiwanis — 6:30 p.m., St. George Antiochian Church, 3204 Ridgewood Road, Copley Township. Dinner is $10. Information: Ellen Martin, 330-818-9809 or email [email protected].

Fairlawn Business Exchange Networking Group — 8 to 9 a.m., Panera, 3895 Medina Road, Bath Township. Information: email [email protected] or http://www.­businessexchangeinc.com.

Cuyahoga Falls Toastmasters — 6:30-7:30 p.m., Auditorium 2, Western Reserve Hospital, 1900 23rd St., Cuyahoga Falls. Information: http://2878837.toastmastersclubs.org.

THURSDAY, FEB. 22

Toastmasters in Green — Noon to 1 p.m., The Chapel, Green Campus, 1800 Raber Road, Green. Information: email [email protected].

Thursday Night Toastmasters — 7-8 p.m., Cleveland Clinic Akron General Wellness Center, 1940 Town Park Blvd., Green. Information; http://www.tntohio.toastmastersclubs.org.

Bath Richfield Kiwanis — 6 p.m., Fellowship Hall, 3903 Broadview Road, Richfield. Dinner is $11. Information: Ellen Martin, 330-818-9809 or email [email protected].

Business Network International, Green Initiative Chapter — 7:30 a.m., Cornerstone Church, 578 Killian Road, Springfield Township. Information: Jeremy Mantel, 330-575-7289.

Beacon Toastmasters — Noon to 1 p.m., Akron Beacon Journal, second-floor meeting room, 44 E. Exchange St., Akron. Information: Vicky Nann, 330-622-3963.

AmSpirit Business Connections, Summit Business Network Chapter — 7:45-9 a.m., Bob Evans, 175 Howe Ave., Cuyahoga Falls. Free. Information: 330-835-4005 or email [email protected].

TEEM (Together Everyone Earns More) — 7-8:30 a.m., Silver Lake Country Club, 1325 Graham Road, Silver Lake. Information: Lonnie Young, 330-701-6799.

Akron Executives Association — 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., St. George Fellowship Centre, 3204 Ridgewood Road, Copley Township. Reservations required: Tina Thelin, 330-247-2200.

Business Network International – Akron Winning Edge Chapter — 7 a.m., Freedman Chiropractic, 3624 W. Market St., Fairlawn. Information: Joe Scarpino, 330-745-0053 or http://www.bni-ohio.com.

International Referral Network – Fairlawn/Montrose Chapter — 11:45 a.m., Fairlawn Kiwanis Community Center, 3486 Smith Road, Fairlawn. Information: Jim Koewler, 330-659-3579.

Entrepreneurship Series: Sexual Harassment in the Workplace — 6:30 p.m., Hudson Library & Historical Society, 96 Library St. Presented by attorney Karen Adinolfi, partner at Roetzel and Andress. Free. For more information, call 330-653-6658, ext. 1010.

FRIDAY, FEB. 23

Akron Downtown Toastmasters — Noon, University Park YMCA, 477 E. Market St., Akron. Information: Tom Serle, 330-678-8930.

Business Network International, Aurora Borealis Chapter — 7:30 a.m., Club Waldon, 585 Country Club Land, Aurora. Details: Keith Smith, 216-595-7900 or http://www.bni-ohio.com.

Most investors have one-track minds.

They focus intently on a company’s earnings, the growth rate of earnings, and analysts’ estimates (scientific term: guesses) of future earnings. Usually they give little thought to a company’s balance-sheet strength.

A company with strong finances can gobble up troubled competitors in hard times, increase dividends, buy back stock, or fund valuable research and development.

In an effort to make lure investors’ attention away from earnings for a minute, I annually compile a list of Balance Sheet Powerhouses.

Making the list is an honor. It is not necessarily a stock recommendation; that depends on how expensive each stock is. From the Powerhouse list, I usually pick just a few stocks to recommend.

To make the list, a company must pass six tests:

• Domiciled and traded in the U.S.

• Market value $1 billion or more.

• $300 million or more in cash or near cash.

• Debt less than 10% of stockholders’ equity.

• Current ratio (current assets divided by current liabilities) of 2.0 or better.

• Earnings of at least 10 cents a share in the latest fiscal year.

Twenty-eight companies met the criteria this year.

Longest track records

Gentex Corp. (GNTX), which makes self-dimming rear view mirrors for cars and other products using electro-optic technology, is back on the Powerhouse list for the eighth time. The Zeeland, Mich., company is debt-free and has more than $600 million in cash.

Alphabet Inc. (GOOGL), previously known as Google Inc., make the Powerhouse list for the seventh time. It has more than $10 billion in cash and cash equivalents, plus $91 billion in marketable securities.

Also taking a bow for the seventh time is Dolby Laboratories Inc. (DLB) of San Francisco. Its equipment enhances sound reproduction for the recording industry and movies, as well as in consumer products. Dolby has more than $800 million in cash and no debt.

Back for a sixth time is Cognizant Technology Solutions Corp. (CTSH) of Teaneck, N.J., a technology consultant.

Five-time winners are Expeditors International of Washington Inc. (EXPD), Intuitive Surgical Inc. (ISRG), SEI Investments Co. (SEI) and Skyworks Solutions Inc. (SWKS).

Foot Locker Inc. (FL), which had a rough year in the stock market last year (suffering a 34 percent loss) is still a balance sheet powerhouse, for the fourth time.

Newer to the list

Copping honors for a third time are Align Technology Inc. (ALGN), Arista Networks Inc. (ANET), Columbia Sportswear Co. (COLM), Facebook Inc. (FB), IPG Photonics Corp. (IPGP), Sanderson Farms Inc. (SAFM), and Unifirst Corp. (UNF).

Celebrating their sophomore year are Ambarella Inc. (AMBA), Ansys Inc. (ANSS), Deckers Outdoor Corp. (DECK), Epam Systems Inc. (EPAM), ICU Medical Inc. (ICUI), MicroStrategy Inc. (MSTR), Monster Beverage Corp. (MNST) and Skechers USA Inc. (SKX).

Making their debut on the list are Advanced Energy Industries (AEII), Marriott Vacations World (VAC), Veeva Systems Inc. (VEEV) and Yelp Inc. (YELP).

What I like

Among these 28 outstanding companies, there are five I currently recommend. One is Foot Locker, the shoe retailer, which I feel was beaten up excessively last year. Another is Sanderson Farms, a chicken producer I have mentioned from time to time in this column for years.

I also fancy Advanced Energy Industries, a Fort Collins, Colo., company that specializes in power conversion, measurement and control. Its sales and earnings rose nicely in the past two years; analysts foresee the same for this year and next.

Skyworks Solutions, based in Woburn, Mass., makes semiconductors used for wireless communications. The company is debt free and the stock sells for 17 times earnings.

Finally, I plump for Gentex, which is also debt free and also sells for 17 times earnings. I like its pretax profit margin, almost 30 percent last year.

This is the 14th column I’ve written about Balance Sheet Powerhouses. My recommendations from the previous 13 have averaged a 12-month total return of 15.6 percent, compared to 8.9 percent for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index over the same periods.

However, my picks from a year ago fared poorly, returning only 2.2 percent versus 14.2 percent for the index. I recommended only three stocks and Foot Locker – a disaster in 2017 — was one of them.

Bear in mind that my column recommendations are theoretical and don’t reflect actual trades, trading costs or taxes. Their results shouldn’t be confused with the performance of portfolios I manage for clients. And past performance doesn’t predict future results.

Disclosure: I own shares in Alphabet and Sanderson Farms personally and for most of my clients. My firm owns Foot Locker, Skyworks Solutions and Veeva for one or more clients. For a few clients, I hold put options on Align Technology.

John Dorfman is chairman of Dorfman Value Investments LLC in Newton Upper Falls, Mass. His firm or clients may own or trade securities discussed in this column. He can be reached at [email protected].

(Editor’s note: The following column was released for publication Feb. 6, more than a week before LyondellBassell announced its acquisition of Fairlawn-based A. Schulman Inc.)

Momentum investing – putting money into stocks that have been rising – was the most successful investment style in 2017.

Value investing – choosing stocks that are cheap – was a bit out of favor last year, but it is my favorite style for the long term.

Therefore, I think this is a good time to look for stocks that possess both value and momentum. Allow me to suggest five for your consideration.

Fiat Chrysler

Auto manufacturers are notoriously cyclical, rising and falling with the tides of the economy. Nonetheless, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV (FCAU) looks good to me at the moment.

Shares of the London-based automaker rose about 96 percent last year, from near $9 to more than $17. Nonetheless, they still are valued at only 7 times earnings and 0.2 times revenue. Car makers’ stocks often sell for low multiples but, in this case, I think the shares are a bargain. Analysts expect a 29 percent jump in profits this year.

The company has ten brands of cars and trucks. Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat and Jeep provide the bulk of sales. Maserati, Lancia and Alfa Romeo provide the sizzle.

Lincoln National

Selling for only 11 times earnings, Lincoln National Corp. (LNC) shares rose 16 percent last year, which is less than the S&P 500 rose. But don’t sniff: That rise came on top of a 32 percent return in 2016.

The company, based in Radnor, Pennsylvania, sells annuities, life insurance and disability insurance, and administers pension plans. It’s a slow-growth business but a steady one.

The dividend yield is modest, 1.6 percent at the moment. But the company has raised its dividend regularly in the past few years, and, in my opinion, there is ample room to raise it more.

LyondellBasell

LyondellBasell Industries NV (LYB) is one of the largest plastic and chemical producers in the world. Its world headquarters are in the Netherlands; U.S. headquarters are in Houston, Texas. Its shares rose about 29 percent last year.

Simultaneous economic improvement in Europe, Asia and the U.S. creates a great climate for LyondellBasell, since its industries are undeniably cyclical. If you think, as I do, that economic strength will persist or grow during the next year, the stock is probably a good bet.

The shares sell for 11 times earnings, which I consider favorable in this environment. (The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index fetches 22 times earnings right now.)

Piper Jaffray

Rising interest rates tend to help financial firms, including brokerage houses and investment banks such as Piper Jaffray Companies (PJC) of Minneapolis, Minn. Companies are more likely to hire them to manage stock offerings as borrowing from banks becomes more expensive.

Brokers also make more money from stock loans when interest rates climb. And, if rising rates are associated with economic strength (as is the case now), investors’ appetite for trading is stimulated.

Piper Jaffray shares have more than doubled in the past two years. However, they don’t seem exorbitantly valued at 13 times earnings.

Jupai Holdings

Finally, and most speculatively, I recommend a money management company in China, Jupai Holdings Ltd. Obviously, China has looser regulations and accounting standards than the U.S. does. Nonetheless, it is the world’s second-biggest economy, and has been growing rapidly.

Jupai is highly profitable, has no debt, and increased its revenue at a 49 percent clip last year.

Performance record

This is the 32nd column I have written (from 2000 to the present) on stocks that possess both value and momentum. The average one-year total return on the first 30 columns (all the ones for which one-year performance can be calculated) has been 15.3 percent, compared to 9.0 percent for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index.

Recommendations in 22 of the 30 columns have been profitable. They have beaten the S&P 500 in 17 cases.

Bear in mind that my column recommendations are theoretical and don’t reflect actual trades, trading costs or taxes. Their results shouldn’t be confused with the performance of portfolios I manage for clients. And past performance doesn’t predict future results.

My recommendations from a year ago didn’t beat the index. They rose 18.1 percent, helped by a 97 percent gain in TopBuild Corp. (BLD), which makes building materials. My main benchmark, the S&P 500, was up 22.9 percent from February 7, 2017 through February 2, 2018.

I had losses in Dorian LPG Ltd. (LPG), which distributes liquified petroleum gas, and United Therapeutics Inc. (UTHR), which specializes in drugs for pulmonary hypertension. Both of those stocks dropped more than 20 percent.

Disclosure: I currently have no positions in the stocks discussed in today’s column, for myself or clients.

John Dorfman is chairman of Dorfman Value Investments LLC in Newton Upper Falls, Mass. His firm or clients may own or trade securities discussed in this column. He can be reached at [email protected].

Diebold Nixdorf reported it lost money for the fourth quarter and for its full fiscal year even as revenue increased.

The company said it expects a smaller annual loss for the 2018 fiscal year, with revenue staying flat.

The Green ATM maker and financial software services firm reported a fourth- quarter loss of $108.3 million, or $1.43 a share, on revenue of $1.25 billion for the fourth quarter ending Dec. 31. That compares to a loss of $77.8 million, or $1.04 a share, on revenue of $1.24 billion a year ago.

The fourth quarter included a one-time charge of about $95 million because of recent U.S. tax reform. The company had positive adjusted earnings per share of 40 cents for the quarter.

For the full year, Diebold Nixdorf reported it lost $233.1 million, or $3.09 a share, on revenue of $4.6 billion. That compares to a loss of $33 million, or 48 cents per share, on revenue of $3.3 billion for fiscal 2016.

Diebold said it had positive adjusted earnings of $1.13 per share for the full year.

For 2018, Diebold Nixdorf said it expects to lose $40 million to $65 million, or 50 to 80 cents per share, on revenue of $4.5 billion to $4.7 billion. Adjusted earnings are expected to show a profit of $1 to $1.30 a share.

Shares were down 45 cents, or 3.1 percent, to $14.10 as of 3:07 p.m. Shares are down 14.1 percent since Jan. 1 and are down 48.4 percent from a year ago.

Company executives said in a conference call with industry analysts that Diebold Nixdorf was experiencing “challenged hardware sales” of its ATMs, while maintenance, service and software sales were up.

The company has reduced its annual ATM global manufacturing capacity from 180,000 units to 100,000 units, they said. The company also streamlined ATM models by more than 50 percent, they said.

“Our fourth quarter results were in-line with expectations,” Christopher A. Chapman, interim co-CEO and chief financial officer, Diebold Nixdorf, said in a news release. “We’re encouraged by the continued growth in services and software revenue. However, the hardware business continues to be under pressure in the banking market.”

Juergen Wunram, interim co-CEO and chief operating officer, said the company was encouraged by the continued strength of its retail business.

“The company is also experiencing solid demand for services and software, as we expand our leadership position in those areas,” Wunram said.

NEW YORK: Stocks plunged again Thursday, and for the second time in four days, the Dow Jones industrial average sank more than 1,000 points.

The two best-known stock market indexes, the Dow and the Standard & Poor’s 500, have dropped 10 percent from their all-time highs, set Jan. 26. That means they are in what is known on Wall Street as a “correction,” their first in almost two years.

Stocks fell further and further as the day wore on and suffered their fifth loss in the last six days.

Many of the companies that led the market’s gains over the last year have struggled badly in the last week. Those included technology companies, banks, retailers, travel companies and homebuilders.

After huge gains in the first weeks of this year, stocks started to tumble last Friday after the Labor Department said workers’ wages grew at a fast rate in January. That’s good for the economy, but investors worried it will hurt corporate profits and that rising wages are a sign of faster inflation. It could prompt the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates at a faster pace, which would act as a brake on the economy.

“Far and away the most important things are the fear that the Fed is going to make a mistake, and higher wages are going to cut into margins,” said Scott Wren, senior global equity strategist for Wells Fargo Investment Institute.

The worry, he said, is that the Fed will raise interest rates too quickly.

The Dow Jones industrial average lost 1,032.89 points, or 4.1 percent, to 23,860.46. Boeing, Goldman Sachs and Home Depot took some of the worst losses.

The S&P 500, the benchmark for many index funds, shed 100.66 points, or 3.8 percent, to 2,581. It hasn’t been that low since mid-November. The Nasdaq composite fell 274.82 points, or 3.9 percent, to 6,777.16.

Tom Martin, senior portfolio manager with Globalt Investments, said he didn’t see anything specific moving the market lower, just a continuation of a shift in investor mindset from fear of missing out in a rising market to worry of clocking big losses in a market that’s turned.

“This is going to take longer to work out than people expect,” he said.

NEW YORK: Stocks plunged again Thursday, and for the second time in four days the Dow Jones industrial average sank more than 1,000 points.

The two best-known stock market indexes, the Dow and the Standard & Poor’s 500, have dropped 10 percent from their all-time highs, set Jan. 26. That means they are in what is known on Wall Street as a “correction,” their first in almost two years.

Stocks fell further and further as the day wore on and suffered their fifth loss in the last six days. Many of the companies that led the market’s gains over the last year have struggled badly in the last week. Those included technology companies, banks, and retailers and travel companies and homebuilders.

After huge gains in the first weeks of this year, stocks started to tumble last Friday after the Labor Department said workers’ wages grew at a fast rate in January. That’s good for the economy, but investors worried it will hurt corporate profits and that rising wages are a sign of faster inflation. It could prompt the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates at a faster pace, which would act as a brake on the economy.

“Far and away the most important things are the fear that the Fed is going to make a mistake, and higher wages are going to cut into margins,” said Scott Wren, senior global equity strategist for Wells Fargo Investment Institute. The worry, he said, is that the Fed will raise interest rates too quickly.

The Dow Jones industrial average lost 1,032.89 points, or 4.1 percent, to 23,860.46. Boeing, Goldman Sachs and Home Depot took some of the worst losses.

The S&P 500, the benchmark for many index funds, shed 100.66 points, or 3.8 percent, to 2,581. It hasn’t been that low since mid-November. The Nasdaq composite fell 274.82 points, or 3.9 percent, to 6,777.16.

Tom Martin, senior portfolio manager with Globalt Investments, said he didn’t see anything specific moving the market lower today, just a continuation of a shift in investor mindset from fear of missing out in a rising market to worry of clocking big losses in a market that’s turned.

“This is going to take longer to work out than people expect,” he said. “In January we talked about fear of missing out. What we have now is what I call fear of getting caught.”

The losses were broad. Eight stocks fell for every one that rose on the New York Stock Exchange and 490 of the companies in the S&P 500 took a loss.

The market didn’t get much help Thursday from company earnings reports, several of which disappointed investors. While U.S. companies mostly did well at the end of 2017, a number of them had a weak finish to the year.

Hanesbrands, which makes underwear, T-shirts and socks, reported a smaller profit than investors expected, and its forecast for the current year didn’t live up to analysts’ estimates either. The company also said it will pay $400 million to buy Australian retailer Bras N Things. The stock dropped $2.39, or 10.9 percent, to $19.57.

IRobot, which makes Roomba vacuums, plummeted 32 percent after projected a smaller annual profit than Wall Street was expecting. The stock dropped $28.24 to $59.80.

Twitter had a banner day, soaring 12 percent after turning in a profit for the first time. Its fourth-quarter revenue was also better than expected. The stock rose $3.27 to $30.18.

Online delivery company GrubHub soared after it announced a partnership with Yum Brands, the parent of Taco Bell and KFC. GrubHub will provide the delivery people and technology to let people order food from those restaurants. GrubHub jumped $19.13, or 27.4 percent, to $89.04.

After a sharp loss Wednesday, benchmark U.S. crude lost 64 cents, or 1 percent, to $61.15 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, the international standard for oil prices, gave up 70 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $64.81 per barrel in London.

Stocks in Europe declined and bond yields increased after the Bank of England said could raise interest rates in coming months because of the strong global economy. That also sent the pound higher. Britain’s FTSE 100 fell 1.5 percent and the French CAC 40 lost 2 percent. Germany’s DAX declined 2.6 percent.

Bond prices wobbled and turned higher. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.83 percent from 2.84 percent. Rising yields have made bonds more appealing to some investors compared to stocks. The yield on the 10-year note was as low as 2.04 percent as recently as September.

In other commodities trading, wholesale gasoline remained at $1.77 a gallon. Heating oil lost 1 cent to $1.92 a gallon. Natural gas gave up 1 cent to $2.70 per 1,000 cubic feet.

In Tokyo the Nikkei 225 index rose 1.1 percent. South Korea’s Kospi gained 0.5 percent and the Hang Seng of Hong Kong rose 0.4 percent.

It’s tax season and with that come tax scams.

One of the most common scams is a call that purports to be from the IRS. Remember, the IRS does not call taxpayers.

Since January, the Attorney General’s Office has received about 190 reports of tax-related scams.

“Con artists are very good at what they do,” Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine said. “They rely on scare tactics and surprise. When people get scared, they do irrational things. That’s why we want people to know the warning signs. Awareness can make all the difference.”

The Ohio Attorney General’s Office is sharing warnings about common scams and tips to avoid becoming a victim.

Common scams

• IRS impostor scams: This is the most common tax scam reported to the state. It generally begins with a phone call claiming you owe back taxes or that a warrant has been issued for your arrest. You’re told to call a certain number immediately, and eventually, you’re asked to send money or to provide personal information to resolve the supposed problem.

• W-2 phishing scams: This scam targets employers and payroll employees. Typically, an HR or payroll employee receives an email that appears to come from the boss or the head of the organization. The email instructs the employee to send all employees’ W-2s. Although the email may appear to be legitimate, it’s actually part of a phishing scam. (The IRS warned that this scam surged in 2017 and encouraged employers to report any W-2 thefts immediately to the IRS.)

• Tax identity theft: Tax identity theft generally occurs when someone steals your personal information to file a tax return and fraudulently obtain your refund. This year, there are extra concerns about tax identity theft because of data breaches that have exposed individuals’ Social Security numbers and other sensitive information.

Tips

• File your tax return promptly. This makes it less likely that an impostor will be able to file a tax return in your name to steal your refund.

• Don’t respond to threatening robocalls. If you receive an unexpected phone call from someone who threatens to arrest you for not paying taxes, it’s probably a scam. Don’t respond to the call, and don’t provide payment or personal information over the phone.

• Don’t pay taxes using gift cards. In IRS impostor scams, con artists often ask people to buy gift cards and then read the card numbers over the phone. Using this information, the con artists drain funds from the card, making it difficult to trace or recover the money. The real IRS won’t demand that you pay over the phone using a gift card.

• Protect your personal information. If you file your taxes online, make sure you use a secure internet connection. If you file by mail, take your completed return directly to the post office. Keep sensitive documents in a secure place. Before getting rid of any unneeded documents that contain your Social Security number or other sensitive information, shred them.

• Research tax preparers and tax-preparation companies. Before giving out any personal records or information, check a tax preparer’s credentials. For example, review information in the IRS’ directory of federal tax return preparers. Consider asking trusted friends and family for referrals.

• Watch out for phishing scams. Be wary of email messages that appear to come from your boss, your financial adviser, or your bank and ask you to provide personal information. The message may be part of a phishing scam.

Consumers who want help detecting a potential scam should contact the Ohio Attorney General’s Office at http://www.OhioProtects.org or 800-282-0515. IRS or U.S. Treasury impersonation scams can be reported to the U.S. Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at http://www.treasury.gov/tigta or 800-366-4484. Tax identity theft should be reported to the IRS (for federal taxes) or the Ohio Department of Taxation (for state taxes).

Beacon Journal consumer columnist and medical reporter Betty Lin-Fisher can be reached at 330-996-3724 or [email protected]. Follow her @blinfisherABJ on Twitter or http://www.facebook.com/BettyLinFisherABJ and see all her stories at http://www.ohio.com/betty

New vehicle sales in Northeast Ohio skidded off the road in frigid January.

Last month’s weather, which included sub-zero temperatures at times, definitely chilled sales of new cars, light trucks and SUVs, the Greater Cleveland Automobile Dealers’ Association reports.

Sales in a 21-county region of Northern Ohio totaled 20,280 last month, down 7.8 percent from 21,996 in January 2017.

“The bitter cold took a bite out of sales in January across all segments,” Louis A. Vitantonio, GCADA president, said in a news release. “We see a rebound in February as we move into the [annual auto show], which brings additional incentives and provides an opportunity for consumers to shop all the brands in one location.”

The annual Cleveland Auto Show runs Feb. 23 through March 4 at the I-X Center next to Cleveland-Hopkins Airport.

New cars outsold light trucks, SUVs and crossover vehicles, the association reported, going against a 2017 trend.

Dealers sold 10,843 new cars last month, down from 11,367 a year ago. But that was still better than January sales of new light trucks and SUVs, which totaled 9,437, down from 10,629 in January 2017.

Chevrolet continued to be the best-selling brand in the region with 3,243 vehicles, with Ford in second place with 2,960. Honda was third, followed by Toyota.

Summit County new vehicle sales likewise fell last month, according to figures from the Northeast Ohio Automobile Dealers Association.

County new car and light truck sales in January totaled 2,057, down 8.3 percent from 2,242 a year ago, according to the Akron-based association.

But used vehicle sales did better in Summit County. Used vehicle sales hit 2,889, up 66, or 2.3 percent, from 2,823 a year ago.

There’s some good news for consumers who get the Standard Choice Offer (SCO) for their monthly natural gas.

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio on Wednesday approved the results of Dominion Energy Ohio’s yearly competitive auction to determine the formula to set its monthly SCO price.

The SCO is based on the New York Mercantile Exchange price on the third to last day in the previous month, plus the adder, which is generally anything from a few cents to a few dollars. That auction determines the “adder” price for one year. In 2016, the adder was negative 5 cents. In 2017, it was zero, which meant SCO prices were at wholesale prices.

The new adder, effective April 1, will be 7 cents. While it is a slight increase from previous years, that translates to a $7 yearly increase since the average homeowner uses 100 mcf a year, and is much better than some years, when that adder was several dollars.

Customers who are already on the SCO don’t have to do a thing. You continue to get the SCO unless you choose your own provider for a fixed rate or a variable rate from another marketer or through an aggregation, which is a government bulk-buying group. (If you received a letter recently about the NOPEC aggregation group, check out the Jan. 27 column by Betty Lin-Fisher or go to http://www.ohio.com/betty to read it.)

If you want to get on the SCO, you can also see a step-by-step guide on Betty’s web page. Every year in April, Dominion randomly re-assigns the winning bidders in the auction to customers, so you may see a new name on your bill next to the SCO, but it should make no difference to you. Betty Lin-Fisher can be reached at 330-996-3724 or [email protected]. Follow her @blinfisherABJ on Twitter or http://www.facebook.com/BettyLinFisherABJ and see all her stories at http://www.ohio.com/betty

Bearings maker Timken Co. finished 2017 on a high note and said it expects significantly higher revenue for its 2018 fiscal year.

The Jackson Township manufacturer reported strong fourth quarter earnings compared to a loss the same time period a year ago.

Timken had a net income of $29.2 million, or 37 cents per share, on revenue of $778 million in the fourth quarter, which ended Dec. 31. That compares to a loss of $6.9 million, or 9 cents per share, on revenue of $654.8 million a year ago.

Timken said it had adjusted earnings for the fourth quarter of $53.9 million, or 68 cents per share.

Earnings met analyst expectations while revenue exceeded expectations.

But results apparently did not cheer investors. Timken shares closed down $2.65, or 5.5 percent, to $46.

“We posted solid revenue growth each quarter, responded well to our customers’ increased demand for Timken products and services and delivered significantly improved financial results,” Richard G. Kyle, president and chief executive officer, said in a statement. “We advanced our strategy across all fronts, and we move into 2018 a stronger company well prepared to capitalize on the expected continued growth in our end markets.”

For the full 2017 fiscal year, Timken revenue hit $3 billion, up 12.5 percent from nearly $2.7 billion in fiscal 2016. Net income was $203.4 million, or $2.58 per share, compared to $140.8 million, or $1.78 a share for 2016.

Timken said 2017 revenue went up because of higher demand in off-highway, industrial distribution and heavy truck industries, coupled with beneficial acquisitions and currency. Besides engineered bearings, Timken engineers, makes and services power transmission products.

The company said it expects 2018 revenue will be as much as 10 percent higher than in 2017 based on demand from customers, the benefit of acquisitions and favorable currency translation.

In 2017 Timken added Torsion Control Products, Groeneveld Lubrication Solutions and PT Tech, expanding its portfolio. It also opened what it said is a state-of-the-art manufacturing plant in Romania and agreed to buy India-based ABC Bearings.

The company said it expects to earn $3.05 to $3.15 per share for the full 2018 fiscal year. Adjusted earnings are expected to range from $3.20 to $3.30 per share.

“We enter 2018 with broad strength across our end markets,” Kyle said. “We expect our execution combined with robust markets will result in another year of strong revenue and earnings growth with margin expansion.”

NEW YORK: Foam cups at Dunkin’ Donuts will soon be history, removing what the company estimates will be a billion of them each year from the waste stream.

Dunkin’ said Wednesday that the polystyrene foam cups will be completely phased out from its stores globally by 2020.

Because foam packaging decomposes slowly, ends up in oceans and can harm marine life and other animals that ingest it, there has been push to ban its use.

Dunkin’ Brands Group Inc., based in Canton, Mass., joins other chain restaurants trying to diminish its footprint.

McDonald’s said last month that it would use only recycled or other environmentally friendly materials for its soda cups, Happy Meal boxes and other packaging by 2025.

The historic Taverne of Richfield abruptly closed in recent days.

“We had to close our doors due to unfortunate circumstances,” reads a hand-lettered sign posted on a door of the sprawling Victorian-style wood building in Richfield village.

The names of the co-owners and sisters, Sonya and Serena Raybould, are on the sign, which thanks customers and says, “We apologize from the bottom of our hearts to anyone this affects.”

The sisters could not be reached for comment.

A woman answering the phone at the Richfield Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday read a statement from chamber officials that said, “The chamber has been assured that this historic landmark will soon be open.”

The woman said she could not provide any more information.

The last post on the restaurant’s Facebook page is dated Jan. 23. It advertises a special on chicken wings for the Super Bowl.

Sonya and Serena Raybould ran the restaurant, but did not own the building, which dates to the 1880s.

Last summer, the property at 3960 Broadview Road was listed for sale. That prompted some to ask whether the restaurant was closing, Serena Raybould said in an Aug. 2 Beacon Journal article.

The owner of the building could not be reached for comment.

Serena Raybould said in the article that when she bought the restaurant in October 2010, she was 29 and had been a server at the Taverne for five years.

She said that she had strived to bring consistency to the menu, offering what she calls “chef-inspired scratch cooking.” The restaurant served seafood, steaks, burgers and salads.

The building was first known as the West Richfield Hotel and boasted a ballroom on its second floor, according to the Ohio History Central website of the Ohio History Connection (formerly the Ohio Historical Society).

“The hotel became famous for its glamorous events. Over time, the structure began to deteriorate,” the website says.

In 1977, Mel Rose purchased the building near state Routes 303 and 176.

“He later opened an upscale restaurant called the Taverne of Richfield in the structure,” the website notes.

Rose’s Taverne of Richfield closed in 1997.

The restaurant had at least two reopenings under different owners before the sisters took over the business.

Send local food news to Katie Byard at 330-996-3781 or [email protected]. You can follow her @KatieByardABJ on Twitter or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com.

A Michigan industrial manufacturing company has purchased and started refurbishing the former Wrayco Industries buildings in Stow, a city official says.

One of the two buildings, a 180,000-square-foot facility at 858 Seasons Road, could be occupied no later than the end of March, said Ken Trenner, Stow economic development coordinator.

The plant apparently will be used for metal fabrication, he said.

“They have great plans for the building,” he said. “They’re in there right now getting the building ready. … We’re thrilled we got another manufacturer. This is great for the city.”

The other former Wrayco building is at 5010 Hudson Drive; Trenner said he was unsure how that 60,000-square-foot site will be used.

Real estate firm CBRE on Tuesday issued a news release announcing the sale of the two buildings but didn’t identify the new owner or tenant. Terms also were not disclosed.

Trenner said the Stow buildings will be occupied by a business affiliated with Royal Arc Industrial Services, a diversified manufacturer out of Michigan.

The Royal Arc website said the company provides Occupational Safety and Health Administration compliant training, engineering, designing and manufacturing and maintaining of overhead cranes, preventative maintenance, annual inspections, hoist rebuilds and overhead lifting devices.

Royal Arc could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

Wrayco Industries, which specialized in manufacturing leakproof vessels for heavy construction equipment such as fuel and hydraulic tanks, announced in December 2016 that it was shuttering its facilities in early 2017, with the loss of about 80 jobs. The company was founded in 1980.

Reporter Jim Mackinnon covers business and county government. He can be reached at 330-996-3544 or [email protected]. Follow him @JimMackinnonABJ on Twitter or http://www.facebook.com/JimMackinnonABJ

NEW YORK: Don’t expect to see “lady Doritos” on store shelves. The company behind the cheesy chips said Tuesday that it’s not developing a line of Doritos designed specifically for women, despite widespread online speculation that it was.

The phrase “lady Doritos” trended on social media after PepsiCo’s longtime CEO Indra Nooyi said on a podcast that unlike men, women don’t like to lick their fingers after eating a bag of Doritos.

“Women would love to do the same, but they don’t,” Nooyi said in an interview on the Freakonomics podcast. “They don’t like to crunch too loudly in public. And they don’t lick their fingers generously and they don’t like to pour the little broken pieces and the flavor into their mouth.”

Nooyi, who has run the soda and snack company for more than a decade, later said the company is “getting ready to launch” snacks that are “designed and packaged differently” for women. “Women love to carry a snack in their purse,” Nooyi said.

But PepsiCo said the interpretation of her comments to mean that female-friendly Doritos were in the works were “inaccurate.”

“We already have Doritos for women — they’re called Doritos,” the company said in a statement Tuesday.