Business briefs: Southwest Airlines hike fares

Southwest Airlines Co. (LUV) raised most of its fares by $1 to $10 each way, and many competitors matched the move. Southwest, which boasts about its low fares, said the fare hike is its second this year after six in 2006. The increases, which began showing up Friday, ranged from $1 each way on flights of under 500 miles to $10 on walk-up fares for flights longer than 1,250 miles.

FORD HYBRIDS

Ford Motor Co. (F) and Southern California Edison will team up to test rechargeable hybrid vehicles and hasten mass production of the new technology. The utility will get a Ford plug-in hybrid vehicle by the end of this year and as many as 20 by the end of 2009 to test durability, range and impact on the power grid. Plug-in hybrids generally have batteries that power an electric motor.

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