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Tyson Foods closes year on record note

Tyson Foods closed its fiscal year on a strong note as it posted record sales and earnings, while announcing several leadership changes in its management structure. The Springdale-based meat company recorded fourth-quarter earnings of $261 million on sales of $8.89 billion. One year ago, Tyson Foods posted net income of $185 million on revenue of $8.32 billion.

Business Briefs - Pulaski County schools close to desegregation agreement, AG says

The three Pulaski County school districts will receive three years’ worth of desegregation payments, plus another year of equal payments for academic facilities only, under an agreement reached between Attorney General Dustin McDaniel’s office and the school districts, McDaniel told a legislative panel Thursday. McDaniel told the Joint Subcommittee on Desegregation Litigation Oversight that the agreement has not been finalized. However, he did express confidence that the districts’ school boards would agree to the deal.

Metropolitan National Bank turns another quarterly profit

Metropolitan National Bank announced a third quarter profit of $1.59 million. For the first three quarters of 2013, the Little Rock-based bank has posted $3.53 million in net income. In September, Metropolitan was acquired by Pine Bluff-based Simmons First for $53.6 million. Metropolitan’s parent company, Rogers Bancshares, had filed for bankruptcy protection earlier this year following the death of its principal owner Doyle Rogers. The merger is expected to close at the end of December 2013 and the two banks will consolidate during the first quarter of 2014.

Arkansas Poll shows concerns growing on economy

The Arkansas Poll, conducted by the University of Arkansas, shows voter attitudes are more pessimistic than a year ago. When asked if the economy was heading in the right direction or wrong direction, 63 percent of voters said it was heading in the right direction versus 20 percent who indicated the economy was off-track. Last year, 73 percent of voters said the economy was heading in the right direction, while 17 percent said it was heading in the wrong direction. The poll was conducted during the government shutdown.

Arkansas delegation votes to reopen federal government, hike debt ceiling

All six members of Arkansas’ Congressional delegation voted for a Senate-sponsored measure to reopen the federal government and to extend the nation’s debt ceiling limit after nearly three weeks of high-stakes political wrangling. The measure approved by the U.S. House and U.S. Senate would fund the federal government and increase the Treasury Department’s borrowing power to $16.7 trillion. President Obama signed the bill into law late Wednesday night.