Phillips Petroleum (P) agreed to buy Atlantic Richfield's (ARC) - Get Report oil and gas assets in Alaska for $7 billion.

The deal, which is set to close in the second quarter, calls for Phillips to retain all of Arco's workers in Alaska. Phillips said the acquisition would tack on $1.28 a share to its fiscal 2000 earnings. Before the announcement, the 24-analyst estimate expected the company to post earnings of $3.27 a share.

In other postclose news (earnings estimates from

First Call/Thomson Financial

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

Mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures

Zions Bancorp

(ZION) - Get Report

said it did not infringe upon terms of its merger agreement with

First Security

and said that it has not abandoned its recommendation urging investors to favor the deal. First Security charged Zions broke certain terms of their planned merger.

Goldman Sachs

scratched a fairness opinion on the deal two days ago because of its hefty price tag. Based on Wednesday's closing prices, the deal now values First Security at $3.4 billion, or $17.13 a share, below the initial figure of $5.9 billion announced in June.

Earnings/revenue reports

Electro Scientific

(ESIO) - Get Report

posted third-quarter earnings of 43 cents a share, beating the eight-analyst estimate of 40 cents and up from the year-ago 12 cents.



said it would most likely miss the fourth-quarter five-analyst estimate of 52 cents a share. The company cited slowness in its surface finishing business as the culprit for the shortfall.

Mark IV


reported fourth-quarter earnings of 38 cents a share, a penny better than the three-analyst estimate and up from the year-ago 28 cents. The company said it could meet the fiscal 2001 three-analyst estimate of $1.90 a share while oil and mining activity regain strength. Mark IV said it has retained

Bear Stearns

to examine strategic alternatives for the company, which could include a possible sale or merger.



TST Recommends

said February same-store sales increased 10.7%.

Offerings and stock actions

Moden Media.Poppe Tyson


filed a 4.5 million-share secondary offering.

Credit Suisse First Boston


Robertson Stephens


Thomas Weisel Partners


First Union Securities

are serving as the deal's lead underwriters.



said Philip Hotchkiss has stepped down as president. said Chairman and CEO Larry Kramer will fill the position in the interim until a new president is tapped.


New York Stock Exchange


W.W. Grainger

(GWW) - Get Report

to explain why its shares were so heavily traded during today's session. The stock, which closed up 1 7/16 to 46 15/16, saw volume of 1.1 million shares, more than twice the average daily volume.

For a look into this evening's after-hours trading action, please check out's

The Night Watch.

As originally published, this story contained an error. Please see

Corrections and Clarifications.