Pacific Northwest stock rose to a seven-month high after Citigroup doubled its estimate for the number of Kindle electronic-reading...

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Retail stock rose to a seven-month high after Citigroup doubled its estimate for the number of Kindle electronic-reading devices the world’s largest Internet retailer might sell this year.

The shares climbed $7.58, or 9.4 percent, to $88.09 Monday.

The company may sell 380,000 Kindles in 2008, up from its earlier projection of 190,000, Citigroup analyst Mark Mahaney wrote Sunday in a research report. He recommends buying the stock.

“Kindle is becoming the iPod of the book world,” Mahaney wrote. “Kindle could be one of the top ‘gadget’ gifts this holiday season.” He noted that Apple sold 380,000 iPod music players in 2002, the first year they were sold.

The retailer began selling the paperback-sized Kindle in November at $399, with more than 90,000 titles available. The Kindle now costs $359 and Amazon offers more than 150,000 downloads.

Amazon doesn’t disclose Kindle sales, spokeswoman Heather Huntoon wrote Monday in an e-mail.


Whole Foods still growing in Seattle

Despite scaling back new store openings after a third-quarter profit drop, Whole Foods Market is going ahead with plans for two more Seattle-area stores.

“We are very excited about our growth in Seattle, and our two planned stores in Interbay and West Seattle are going ahead,” said spokeswoman Vicki Foley. Opening dates for those stores have not been announced.

Whole Foods currently has five stores in Washington: Bellevue, Redmond, Roosevelt Square and Westlake in Seattle, and Vancouver.

Last week, the company reported its profit dropped 31 percent in the third quarter, partly due to economic headwinds and costs from its acquisition of Wild Oats.


Boeing tests 787 landing gear

Boeing began testing the landing gear of the first of its new 787 Dreamliner jets Saturday, as the airplane nears readiness for first flight in about three months.

The tests involve swinging the landing gear into a stowed position and back down into a landing position to verify that it works as it should on a regular flight.

The gear action is initiated from the plane’s flight deck and requires the successful integration of the airplane’s electronic and hydraulic systems with its structural parts.

The nose and the main gear parts were tested independently and then jointly. Testing continues this week.


Delta, Northwest pilots OK joint pact

Delta Air Lines and Northwest Airlines pilots approved a new joint contract, clearing the way for combining their unions after a merger that will create the world’s largest carrier.

The accord was supported by more than 61 percent of Delta pilots who voted, and by about 87 percent of Northwest pilots, the airlines’ pilot groups said Monday.

The ratification removes a hurdle for Delta as it works to close its purchase of Northwest by the end of the year.

Delta CEO Richard Anderson will run the company, which will keep Delta’s name and Atlanta headquarters.


Toyota will keep making Solara

Toyota Motor has decided to extend production of its Solara convertible for up to two more years, the automaker announced Monday.

Steve St. Angelo, senior vice president of Toyota North American manufacturing operations, said the automaker decided not to end the model’s run this month in response to market demands.


Companies quiet about ad targeting

Several Internet and broadband companies have acknowledged using targeted-advertising technology without explicitly informing customers, according to letters released Monday by the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

And Google, the leading online advertiser, stated it has begun using Internet tracking technology that lets it more precisely follow Web-surfing behavior across affiliated sites.

The revelations came in response to a bipartisan inquiry of how more than 30 Internet companies might have gathered data to target customers.


Readers spending less at newsstands

Newsstand sales of U.S. magazines fell 6.3 percent in the first half of 2008, an industry group said Monday, as rising gas and food costs led consumers to cut back on nonessential spending.

Most top titles, including best-selling Cosmopolitan and O, The Oprah Magazine, had sharp declines. Of the top 10 newsstand sellers, only People, the entertainment news magazine, and In Style posted gains.

“People are shopping very cautiously and less frequently, avoiding impulse buys, which are what magazine purchases are,” said John Harrington, an industry analyst with Harrington Associates.


Union takes aim at United’s CEO

In a show of clout and frustration Monday, United Airlines’ pilots union called for CEO Glenn Tilton to step down and launched a Web site that details the carrier’s lackluster operational and financial performance.

Analysts expect labor unrest to roil the airline industry in the next 18 months as contract talks heat up at American, Continental and Southwest.

The animosity is expected to be intense at Chicago-based United, where Tilton is a popular target for frustrated employees, and where every major union contract is set to be renegotiated by 2010.

Compiled from Bloomberg News, Detroit Free Press, Chicago Tribune and The Associated Press