Holders tendered more than 60 percent of PeopleSoft's shares to Oracle by the deadline of midnight yesterday, Oracle said in a statement, bringing it one step closer to winning the 17-month hostile takeover fight. Oracle chief executive Lawrence J. Ellison's success in winning PeopleSoft's investors' backing for his $8.8 billion bid puts pressure on PeopleSoft to negotiate a purchase.

E.U. Says It Won Product-Name Ruling

The European Union said an initial ruling from the World Trade Organization strengthened the E.U.'s system of protecting names for regionally produced foods such as Champagne and Parma ham. Reports the day before, citing unidentified trade officials, characterized the ruling as the opposite. The E.U. decided to break WTO confidentiality rules on the interim report because of what a spokeswoman termed "not accurate" leaks from "the other parties" -- the United States and Australia.


Financier Carl C. Icahn offered to buy Mylan Laboratories, the largest U.S. maker of generic medicines, for about $5.38 billion to block Mylan's proposed purchase of King Pharmaceuticals. Icahn, who held an 8.9 percent stake in Mylan as of September and is the company's biggest shareholder, said the $4 billion acquisition of King is a mistake because King's sales are slowing and the company might have to restate earnings.

Dominion Resources, the Richmond parent of Virginia Power, was blocked by the Wisconsin Public Service Commission from buying the Kewaunee nuclear plant in that state and turning it into a wholesale electricity dealer.

The Treasury sold $24 billion in four-week bills at the highest discount rate in almost three years: 1.925 percent, up from 1.9 percent last week. The actual rate of return to investors is 1.954 percent, with a $10,000 bill selling for $9,987.70.

Movie Gallery said it offered to buy Hollywood Entertainment to create the second-largest U.S. video rental chain. Terms were not disclosed. It is competing with a $700 million unsolicited offer from Blockbuster.

Maytag froze the pay of salaried workers and is asking for volunteers to accept buyouts.

The House gave final legislative approval to a bill that would prohibit state and local governments from taxing Internet services. President Bush is expected to sign it.

An Alabama jury deadlocked and a mistrial was declared in a lawsuit the state pension system filed against Bear Stearns over losses from the collapse of WorldCom.

A four-month cargo backlog at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach has been cleared, shippers and the longshoremen's union said.


U.S. buyout firm Hicks Muse Tate & Furst said it acquired a 51 percent stake in British luxury-shoe label Jimmy Choo for $187 million.


Advancis Pharmaceutical of Germantown said it would cut 19 jobs -- 18 percent of its workforce -- as part of a plan to cut spending by $20 million for 2005. Last month, Advancis lost a partnership to develop an antibiotic with British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline.

Paul J. Norris, chief executive of Columbia-based W.R. Grace, will quit in May and be replaced by Grace's president and chief operating officer, Alfred E. Festa. Norris will remain on the board of directors.


J.M. Smucker, the largest U.S. jelly and jam maker, said its second-quarter profit rose to $38 million, compared with $32.1 million in the comparable quarter last year. Sales for the quarter ended Oct. 31 increased 57 percent, mostly on its purchase of International Multifoods, to $588.9 million.

Compiled from reports by the Associated Press, Bloomberg News, Dow Jones News Service and Washington Post staff writers.