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Thursday, January 21, 1999

Stocks slump to their worst levels of the session; Ameritech and Genentech report.

Markets

U.S. stocks were near their session lows at midafternoon, with tech and Internet stocks deepest in the weeds.

T. Eric Kilcollin today announced his resignation as president and chief executive of the

Chicago Mercantile Exchange

, to be effective in 60 days.

European bourses generally closed lower.

Asian markets were also mixed, as Japan's

Nikkei 225

picked up 217.37 to close at 14,245.42, while Hong Kong's

Hang Seng

lost 266.34 to 10,048.57.

For more markets action and news, click

here.

Companies

A California jury has ordered

Aetna

(AET)

to pay $120 million to the widow of a man denied coverage for experimental cancer treatment.

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TheStreet Recommends

Coca-Cola

(KO) - Get Coca-Cola Company (The) Report

is considering opening its own line of fashion and sports clothing, according to the

Financial Times

.

Ford Motor

(F) - Get Ford Motor Company Report

reported fourth-quarter earnings of $1.35 a share, 8 cents better than both the

First Call

estimate and the year-ago figure.

Biotech big'un

Genentech

(GNE) - Get Genie Energy Ltd. Class B Stock Report

reported fourth-quarter earnings of 28 cents a share, down a nickel from last year.

Norfolk Southern

(NSC) - Get Norfolk Southern Corporation Report

and

CSX

(CSX) - Get CSX Corporation Report

said they will close their acquisition and division of

Conrail's

rail lines on June 1.

Time Warner

(TWX)

said it will increase its planned stock buyback to as much as $5 billion.

United Airlines

parent

UAL

(UAL) - Get United Airlines Holdings Inc. Report

has expressed interest in buying rival

America West Holdings

(AWA)

.

TSC's

Holly Hegeman

broke the news yesterday afternoon.

United Technologies

(UTX) - Get n.a. Report

said it has hired

Goldman Sachs

to look into the possible sale of its auto components operations.

For more news on companies and stocks, click

here.

Tech

Ameritech

(AIT) - Get Applied Industrial Technologies Inc. Report

reported fourth-quarter earnings of 61 cents a share, in line with Street estimates.

Lucent

(LU) - Get Lufax Holding Ltd American Depositary Shares two of which representing one Report

reported first-quarter earnings of $1.05 a share on strong computer chip and switching system sales, beating analysts' expectations.

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Lycos

(LCOS)

said it's looking for an investor to help the company compete, two days after high-speed Internet service provider

@Home

(ATHM) - Get Autohome Inc. American Depositary Shares each representing four class A. Report

agreed to buy

Excite

(XCIT)

.

For more tech news and commentary, click

here.

International

The lower house of the Brazilian Congress voted to tax retirees' social security checks and increase civil servants' contributions to the pension system.

The latest on Japanese banking consolidation:

Sumitomo Trust & Banking

and

Daiwa Bank

have denied recent reports that they are in merger talks.

For more international news and commentary, click

here.

General News

About 400 people, including Communist Party leader

Gennady Zyuganov

, commemorated the 75th anniversary of

Vladimir Lenin's

death by decorating his Red Square mausoleum with wreaths and carnations.

The U.S. trade deficit grew to $15.5 billion in November, according to

Commerce Department

figures. The 1998 deficit has already reached a record high of $153.9 billion, with December yet to be counted.

President Clinton's

defense team will conclude their oral presentations rebutting

House

managers' charges today.

Religious riots among Christians and Muslims in eastern Indonesia have killed at least 24 people over the past three days.

Elsewhere

Thus spake the Motor City Madman: Rocker

Ted Nugent

is organizing a boycott of Canadian tourism to protest Ontario's banning of its spring bear hunt.

Utah Attorney General

Jan Graham

said she plans to open a fifth probe into the Salt Lake City Olympic bribery scandal after reports by the

Salt Lake Organizing Committee

and the

International Olympic Committee

are released.