Business briefs: Italian wine prices go up

Italian wine producers are forecasting their lowest production in 50 years: 1.14 billion gallons, down 13 percent from a year ago, along with an increase in prices of up to 30 percent. The change is due to unusual weather patterns — heavy rains in the south and a July heat wave in the north — that have caused the earliest harvest on record in 70 years.

DURABLE GOODS

Demand for big-ticket manufactured goods plunged in August by the largest amount in seven months, with widespread weakness signaling a slowdown in the nation’s industrial sector. The Commerce Department reported Wednesday that orders for durable goods, everything from commercial jetliners to home appliances, fell by 4.9 percent in August.

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