California Jury Orders GM to Pay $4.9 Billion

Publish date:

General Motors'

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stock skidded to 66 1/8 in late composite trading after a California jury ordered the car maker to pay $4.9 billion to six people who burned when their car exploded in 1993.

Mark Whitacre, the government informant in the

Archer-Daniels Midland

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antitrust criminal case, was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison for his role in a agricultural-products price-fixing conspiracy. Michael Andreas, son of former ADM chairman Dwayne Andreas, and Terrance Wilson, a retired company executive, were sentenced to two years in prison and maximum fines of $350,000 each for their roles in the scheme to fix the price of lysine, a livestock feed additive.

In other postclose news (earnings estimates from

First Call

; earnings reported on a diluted basis unless otherwise specified):

Earnings/revenue reports and previews



said it expects to post a second-quarter loss of 17 cents to 22 cents a share vs. the year-ago profit of 3 cents. The two-analyst view called for a loss of 12 cents. The company cited a drop in revenue, which it said was caused by a longer than anticipated sales cycle for its products.

Morrison Knudsen


reported second-quarter earnings of 26 cents a share, including a $8.7 million gain on the sale of two non-core business units. The six-analyst forecast called for operating earnings of 19 cents vs. the year-ago 17 cents.

Mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures

JFF Acquisition

said it will begin a $14-a-share tender offer for all common shares of



after the company rejected its $12.50-a-share offer.



Laboratorio Chile

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elected Jorge Uauy its new chairman, replacing Alfredo Andonie.