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Business Briefs

Reported by Star-Bulletin staff & wire

Monday, March 12, 2001

Judge OKs AMR bid for bankrupt TWA

WILMINGTON, Del. - A federal judge today accepted a $742 million bid by AMR Corp.'s American Airlines for the assets of bankrupt Trans World Airlines Inc., pleasing TWA workers who feared their company might be acquired again by billionaire financier Carl Icahn. The purchase still must be approved by the U.S. Justice Department, which is conducting an expedited review. American has said it expects to offer jobs to most of TWA's 20,000 workers, and TWA's unions are expected to approve the deal.

As a result, TWA's name will eventually disappear as the company and its employees are folded into American, said American spokesman John Hotard.

Northwest talks go to emergency board

ARLINGTON, Va - Mechanics at Northwest Airlines Corp. said they failed to reach an agreement with the fourth-largest U.S. airline yesterday, but a presidential order blocks any strike by the union for 60 days. President Bush Friday acted to avert a threatened strike by the Northwest mechanics, creating a three-member presidential emergency board effective today, when union members were technically free to walk off the job. The move effectively prevents any strike for 60 days, or until May 12. The federal government has stepped into numerous railroad disputes, but the Bush-ordered emergency board is only the second formal White House intervention in a major airline contract dispute in 35 years. Union supporters marched in front of the White House today to protest Bush's intervention. About 60 protesters carried signs and chanted "PEB must go, no more status quo," referring to Bush's decision to establish a Presidential Emergency Board to study the dispute.

Microsoft, eBay forming alliance

NEW YORK - Online auctioneer eBay Inc. said today it signed a pact with top software maker Microsoft Corp. to use each other's Internet technologies and services, helping eBay expand its Web presence. The firms said they will work together to integrate eBay's online marketplace into a number of Microsoft's Web properties, such as MSN, CarPoint and WebTV, allowing consumers access to eBay's trading services via those sites later this year.

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