Coca-Cola's No. 2 executive, Steven J. Heyer, is quitting after being passed over for the company's top job. E. Neville Isdell was named last month to replace Douglas N. Daft as chairman and chief executive. Isdell said the decision followed discussions he had with Heyer over the past week. Analysts, former employees and Coca-Cola observers have said more changes could come under Isdell's watch as he seeks to restore confidence in a company that continues to post strong earnings but has had public image problems amid federal investigations and key executive departures.
Euro Disney Bailed Out Again
Walt Disney Co. and three French banks agreed to bail out Euro Disney for the second time in a decade in a package designed to prevent it from defaulting on $2.9 billion of debt. Euro Disney, which is 39 percent owned by Walt Disney, would sell new stock under the agreement. The accord needs to be approved by creditors holding more than half of the debt, said Pieter Boterman, a spokesman for Euro Disney. Walt Disney previously helped keep its affiliate afloat by forgoing fees for the use of Mickey Mouse and other characters from 1994 to 1998.
The House Appropriations Committee voted 35-17 to block a federal contract with Accenture, potentially worth $10 billion, for developing a system to track foreign visitors because the company sidesteps some U.S. taxes by being headquartered in Bermuda. The ultimate fate of the provision, however, is in doubt. One of its sponsors, Rep. Rosa L. DeLauro (D-Conn), has gotten similar language into several bills over the last two years, only to see it killed or weakened by House Republican leaders.
A federal grand jury indicted former Secret Service document examiner Larry F. Stewart on charges that he committed perjury at the trial of Martha Stewart by exaggerating his role in examining ink on a key document. Larry Stewart, no relation to the multimillionaire businesswoman, was arrested on the same charges last month.
Five-year note yields rose to 4.010 percent, their highest level in two years, in the Treasury Department's latest auction. The notes will carry a coupon interest rate of 4 percent, with each $10,000 in face value selling for $9,995.50.
May Department Stores will buy Marshall Field's department stores and nine Mervyn's locations from Target Corp. for $3.24 billion in cash. The move strengthens May's presence in the Midwest, giving it 62 new stores, mostly in Chicago, Detroit and Minneapolis-St. Paul. May said it would keep the Marshall Field's name and operate it as a stand-alone division.
U.S. wholesale inventories fell 0.1 percent in April as demand for pharmaceuticals, imported automobiles and other goods outpaced supplies, the Commerce Department said. It also reported that wholesale sales rose 0.8 percent in the month after a 2.9 percent gain that was the largest in more than nine years, bringing supplies at distribution centers, warehouses and terminals to a record low of 1.12 months' worth of inventories.
A Minnesota judge dismissed seven class-action lawsuits brought against Northwest Airlines by passengers about whom information was provided to NASA for an aviation security research project. U.S. District Judge Paul Magnuson rejected the plaintiffs' contention that Northwest had violated the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and the Fair Credit Reporting Act. He said lawyers for plaintiffs had failed to show that passengers were harmed by the data sharing.
Schering Plough agreed to pay $500,000 to settle Securities and Exchange Commission charges that its Polish subsidiary improperly gave money to a charity to influence a Polish health fund to buy its products. Between 1999 and 2002, Schering Plough-Poland donated $76,000 to the Chudow Castle Foundation, which was headed by an individual who also directed Silesian Health fund, one of 16 regional government drug-purchasing agencies. Sales of Schering-Plough cancer drugs shot up dramatically in Silesia during that period, the settlement said.
Tomo Razmilovic, former president and chief executive of Symbol Technologies, was declared a fugitive after his lawyer told federal prosecutors that his client will not return to the United States to face arraignment on charges of accounting fraud. Razmilovic was believed to have returned to his native Croatia from England, where he had resided since leaving the company two years ago, prosecutors said. Razmilovic, six other former Symbol executives and their chief legal counsel were charged last week with deceiving investors by inflating the company's reported earnings by more than $200 million.
The Federal Reserve will "do what is necessary" to keep inflation under control, and financial markets already are anticipating higher borrowing costs, said Timothy Geithner, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Markets expect a "gradual rise" in the overnight lending rate over the next two years, he told the Institute of International Bankers.
Lehman Brothers and Morgan Stanley were fined and censured by the New York Stock Exchange's enforcement division, the NYSE said in a statement. Lehman was fined $175,000 for entering more than 245 test orders in what appeared to be real trades to test its system during business hours, an NYSE panel said. Morgan Stanley had about $455 million less than required as collateral for securities loans on July 31, 2002, because supervisory failures and a lack of written procedures allowed the use of margined securities as collateral, the NYSE said. Also, the NYSE fined David Memmott, head of Morgan Stanley's block-trading desk, $100,000 and suspended him for six weeks for allegedly making transactions that artificially inflated the share price of Arlington-based energy producer AES. Memmott, who didn't admit or deny guilt, agreed to the penalty.
A judge who has repeatedly rejected pleas for leniency for the wife of former Enron finance chief Andrew S. Fastow admonished Lea W. Fastow's lawyer for his efforts to get her into a minimum-security women's prison camp. U.S. District Judge David Hittner issued an order admonishing Mike DeGeurin for sending a confidential court report to the Federal Bureau of Prisons last month with a letter that noted Lea Fastow's family hoped she would serve her year in prison at the camp in Bryan. The judge on Monday ordered her to surrender July 12 to a high-rise detention center in downtown Houston to serve her sentence.
Honda Motor is recalling 130,617 CR-V sport-utility vehicles because the driver's air bag may inflate incorrectly because of faulty wiring, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said. Vehicles from the 2002-2004 model years are included in the recall. Honda also is recalling 19,572 Accord sedans because their instrument panel lights can fail because of a heat buildup inside the panel. Sedans from the 2000-2001 model years are included in the recall.
Bertelsmann and Sony plan to meet with European Commission officials next week to dispel concerns the planned combination of the two company's music businesses may crimp competition. The commission, which is the executive arm of the European Union, will likely cast its final decision on the combination by July 22, Bertelsmann said.
Bombardier, the world's third-biggest commercial-aircraft maker behind Airbus and Boeing, said it is considering development of a new family of aircraft with 110 to 135 seats -- significantly bigger than the Canadian company's existing models.
General Dynamics, the Falls Church-based defense contractor, said it will buy TriPoint Global Communications of Newton, N.C., to expand its offering of mobile communications systems for the military. Terms weren't disclosed. TriPoint, a maker of ground-based satellite and wireless communication equipment and integration services for video, voice and data applications, has about 1,450 employees in 14 locations. It makes base-station and Earth-station communications products and antenna systems.
H&R Block reported that its profit for the quarter ended April 30 rose 16 percent, to $575.6 million, boosted by a sharp increase in software and online tax-preparation clients.
Tommy Hilfiger said it earned $26.9 million in the fourth quarter ended March 31. That contrasts with a loss of $113.8 million in the same period a year earlier. Excluding special charges, profit was $36.7 million, compared with $28.3 million a year ago. For the quarter ending June 30, Tommy Hilfiger said it anticipates a loss of 10 cents to 13 cents per share. Analysts surveyed by Thomson First Call had expected a profit of 3 cents per share.
Compiled from reports by the Associated Press, Bloomberg News, Dow Jones News Service and Washington Post staff writers.