Markets

The major indexes opened today mixed, with the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

headed downward and the

S&P 500

and the

Nasdaq Composite Index

up slightly.

Hong Kong's

Hang Seng

closed lower Wednesday, and Japan's

Nikkei 225

was relatively flat in a half day of thin trading. European bourses in general were lackluster.

For more markets action and news, click

here.

Companies

Clothing manufacturer

Salant

(

(SLT) - Get Report

SLT:NYSE) filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and named

Michael Setola

chairman and CEO.

CBS

(

(CBS) - Get Report

CBS:NYSE) is selling its 50% stake in the

CBS Eye on People

cable network to partner

Discovery Communications.

Pinched by sinking oil prices,

Conoco

(

(COC)

COC:NYSE) announced that it will cut 975 jobs to reduce expenses by $500 million.

Ford Motor's

(

(F) - Get Report

F:NYSE) Lincoln Blackwood luxury SUV and

Honda Motor's

(

(HMC) - Get Report

HMC:NYSE) S2000 roadster led unveilings at the

Greater Los Angeles Auto Show

Tuesday.

Air cargo plane operator

Kitty Hawk

(

(KTTY)

KTTY:Nasdaq) plans to eliminate 1,500 jobs at its

American International Airways

division amid shrinking profit margins.

For more news on companies and stocks, click

here.

International

State spending on public works helped China's economy grow by 7.8% in 1998, down by 1% from 1997's pace.

Nomura Securities

said it will pare back its loss-taking overseas operations in 1999 by cutting about 20% of its workforce in Europe and the Americas.

Russian police are investigating the possibility that insiders at that country's

Central Bank

misappropriated as much as $1 billion in public funds.

After six years and five drafts, China yesterday finally approved legislation regulating its securities markets.

For more international news and commentary, click

here.

Tech

The

Telecommunications Industry Association

told the

Federal Communications Commission

Tuesday that consumer access to the Internet through telephone wires, cable, and wireless technology is being hampered by excessive regulatory barriers.

Telecom service provider

RCN

(

(RCNC)

RCNC:Nasdaq) will combine its four Internet service provider businesses into a single entity branded RCN.COM.

Quickturn Design Systems

(

(QKTN)

QKTN:Nasdaq), which has already agreed to be acquired by

Cadence Design Systems

(

(CDN)

CDN:NYSE), says its board is mulling over software maker

Mentor Graphics'

(

(MENT)

MENT:Nasdaq) new takeover offer.

For more tech news and commentary, click

here.

Politics

Cambodia's

King Norodom Sihanouk

refused amnesty for two Khmer Rouge leaders after Prime Minister

Hun Sen

said he would not try them for crimes against humanity.

A group of 200 villagers tortured and killed 8 Indonesian soldiers after forcing them off a public bus.

Four hostages died as Yemeni troops stormed the hideout of Islamic extremists who had kidnapped 16 Western tourists.

Iraq said yesterday that its aircraft will not avoid the "no-fly" zone and are prepared to fire upon allied planes in Iraqi airspace.

Elsewhere

Surprising no one, the

Associated Press

named

Mark McGwire

and

Se Ri Pak

its 1998 Male and Female Athletes of the Year.

Here we go again: Australian balloonist

John Wallington

, real estate tycoon

Dave Liniger

and journalist

Bob Martin

are readying themselves for the next bid to circumnavigate the globe nonstop in a balloon.