At midday, stocks were up from their session lows but still traded sharply lower. Large technology issues were pulling down the
Nasdaq Composite Index
, with bellwether
lately down 9 5/8 to 92 1/4 amid
fears of a possible negative earnings surprise. Blue-chips sustained more modest losses.
European bourses cooled off after a hot start to close mixed. Asian markets closed higher, led by Hong Kong's
, which skyrocketed 278.62 to 9425.42 amid news that its government would end its nine-month moratorium on public land sales. Japan's
added 21.29 to 13,973.69, as that country's central bank said it will lower its key overnight call rate to 0.15% from 0.25%.
watching the rising long-term yields, however.
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filed a contempt-of-court motion against its pilots union, which defied a federal judge's order to end its "sickout" yesterday.
will cut 2,000 jobs as part of its integration of former
Bad news from the pipeline:
has increased its dependence on new pain and arthritis drug
by killing two late-stage cancer drugs, according to the
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
. The drugs are
, a blood-cell stimulant that was in Phase III clinical trials, and
, a platelet booster in Phase II trials.
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has filed suit against
, charging that those companies violate its trademark by generating banner advertisements for other pornographic Web sites when users search on the keyword "playboy."
statement that CMGI supports USA's acquisition of Web portal
, saying that it is "generally supportive" of the merger, but "reserves the right to reassess the position." CMGI owns 20% of Lycos.
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voted today to clear
of charges that he committed perjury and obstructed justice, ending the second presidential impeachment trial in history.
said that the people of East Timor should vote for either autonomy or full independence before Indonesia's
People's Consultative Assembly
meets in November.
expressed interest in forming an alliance between Jordan and the future state of Palestine. Two-thirds of Jordan is Palestinian.
Financial Revitalization Committee
said that the Japanese government will funnel about $66 billion in public funds into 15 large banks.
, deputy leader of Germany's
union for metal and engineering workers, expressed skepticism over the possibility of avoiding a strike through last-minute arbitration between IG Metall and employers.
its new CEO, effective March 26. O'Neill, president of
financial services unit, is the first foreigner named to that position at Barclays.
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, 112 years old, became the oldest person in Japan today when 113-year-old
passed away at her home in central Japan, the
Health and Welfare Ministry
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