Latches spur VW to issue van recall

WASHINGTON -- Volkswagen AG is recalling nearly 16,000 Routan minivans to address fire concerns involving latches on the sliding doors.

The German automaker said the recall affects 2009 minivans, which are jointly developed with Chrysler LLC and built at Chrysler's Windsor, Ontario, plant.

Chrysler recently announced a recall of nearly 285,000 Dodge Grand Caravan and Chrysler Town & Country minivans because of fire concerns inside the sliding doors.

A Volkswagen spokesman said the automaker was aware of "a couple of incidents" indicating overheating in the minivans and the company contacted Chrysler when it received the reports. No injuries or crashes have been reported.

Repaid TARP funds surpasses balance

WASHINGTON -- The Treasury Department on Friday hailed what it called a milestone in the history of the controversial $700 billion bailout fund -- for the first time the amount repaid by banks and other recipients has surpassed the outstanding balance.

In the latest monthly report to Congress on the Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP, Treasury officials said repayments had reached $194 billion. That figure tops the $190 billion in bailout money still outstanding.

Several South Carolina-based banks have received TARP funds, including the owners of First Federal of Charleston and Mount Pleasant-based Tidelands Bank.

Egg lawsuit yields $25M settlement

MINNEAPOLIS -- Land O'Lakes this week reached a $25 million settlement in a lawsuit accusing it and the nation's other big egg producers of price-fixing, an accusation recently bolstered by one of the egg industry's own flock. Sparboe Farms settled this spring and agreed to cooperate with the plaintiffs.

Plaintiffs accuse egg-industry trade organizations and producers of conspiring to restrict supply, and thus raise prices. The industry has maintained that the price run-up was caused by a historic spike in the price of corn, the main ingredient in chicken feed.

Icahn steps up bid to buy film studio

NEW YORK -- Billionaire investor Carl Icahn intensified his effort to take control of the boutique movie studio Lions Gate Entertainment on Friday, saying he will put up his own slate of candidates to replace the company's board. Icahn, who has a roughly 19 percent stake in Lions Gate, has been tussling with management since last year.

Lions Gate backed the Oscar- winning movie "Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' By Sapphire." It also owns the TV Guide network and produces television shows, including "Weeds" and "Mad Men."

Icahn is offering the studio's stockholders $7 per share. The bid expires Wednesday.

Tacoma does not hire SPA's ex-CEO

Former State Ports Authority chief executive officer Bernard S. Groseclose Jr. was passed over for the top job at the Port of Tacoma in Washington. Port commissioners Friday selected interim executive director John Wolfe to stay on permanently. Groseclose had been named as one of five finalists two weeks ago.