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Top News Links: Wednesday, Feb. 26

Airbus hikes production, unveils higher profits

Airbus announced a hike in jetliner production on Wednesday, echoing plans by arch-rival Boeing as they battle to meet record demand for more fuel-efficient planes. The news came as Europe's largest aerospace group unveiled higher 2013 profits, but also cautious forecasts for this year and fresh charges for its newest A350 model. – Reuters

BP money once again flowing to politics

Nearly four years after an oil spill that killed an entire summer of tourism along the Gulf coast, the employee PAC for the oil company BP is dipping its toes in Alabama’s political waters again. A BP employee PAC, run by officials of BP, gave political contributions to Gov. Robert Bentley, House Speaker Mike Hubbard and six other members of the state Legislature in the two weeks after Christmas. – Anniston Star

Styrolution moving production to Decatur

Materials maker Styrolution will close its polystyrene plant in Indian Orchard, Mass., by the end of the year, moving some of that site's production to Decatur. Closing the Indian Orchard plant will eliminate 58 jobs. The plant has annual production capacity of 330 million pounds and was opened by Monsanto Inc. in the 1970s. – Plasticnews.com

Development to transform Birmingham Railroad Park

The start of construction of the $30 million LIV Parkside apartment and retail project is just the beginning of the private development that will eventually transform the area around Birmingham Railroad Park, officials said. – al.com

Mountain Brook may regain favorite pig

Crestline Village might not have to be without its favorite pig for much longer. Robert Jolly, president of Retail Specialists, presented preliminary plans at the Mountain Brook City Council meeting to build a new Piggly Wiggly in the space of the existing CVS/Pharmacy, contingent on CVS finding a new space. – al.com

Alabama securities director issues bitcoin alert

Joseph Borg, the state securities administrator in Alabama and a past president of the North American State Securities Administrators Association, told MarketWatch he planned to issue a consumer alert suggesting that if consumers and investors have trouble redeeming bitcoins or cashing out of their accounts, they stop trading — or adding to their holdings on account — until issues are resolved. – Marketwatch

Soybean prices hit five-month high

Soybean prices are the highest they've been in five months as demand for the crop increases. The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced a sale of 568,000 metric tons of soybeans Tuesday. The price of soybeans has rallied this year amid signs of strong demand from China. Soybeans for delivery in May rose 12.25 cents, or 0.9 percent, to $13.87 a bushel. That's the highest price since September 2013. – Decatur Daily

Drummond dropping production target in Colombia

US-based coal miner Drummond is revising down its 2014 thermal coal production target in Colombia, according to the company's local head, José Miguel Linares Martínez. – Bnamericas.com

Samford University buys office building

Samford University said it has completed the purchase of an office building near its main campus, at 600 University Park Place, that will be a long-term investment. – Samford.edu

John Roberts to retire from Regions board

Regions Financial Corporation has announced that John Roberts will retire from the board of directors effective April 23, 2014, having reached the board’s mandatory retirement age of 72. – Marketwatch

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