Northwest Impasse Declared
Mediators declared an impasse in negotiations between Northwest Airlines and its mechanics, beginning a 30-day cooling-off period that could end with a strike. After Aug. 20, federal labor law says mechanics can strike or Northwest can impose new wage rules. A strike also could be avoided if President Bush appoints an emergency board, as he did in the spring of 2001 when Northwest's mechanics were poised to strike.
Panel Favors Ending AMT
A presidential panel will recommend eliminating the alternative minimum tax, a levy designed to catch affluent tax dodgers that is increasingly affecting middle-income families. Connie Mack, a former Florida senator and chairman of the President's Advisory Panel on Federal Tax Reform, said government revenue lost through elimination of the alternative minimum tax could be replaced through changes in tax rates or tax breaks.
Scrushy to Pay $17 Million
Richard M. Scrushy, left, acquitted last month of leading a $2.7 billion accounting fraud at HealthSouth Corp., will pay $17 million to the company he helped found to satisfy a judgment by a Delaware court, his lawyer said.
The judgment stems from Scrushy's use of HealthSouth stock in 2002 to repay a $25.2 million company loan. Investors sued on behalf of HealthSouth, alleging the fraud he directed as chief executive inflated those shares, which later declined in value.
CIBC to Settle Regulators' Charges
The Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce will pay $125 million to settle regulators' charges of improper trading that hurt ordinary shareholders, authorities said.
The payment, which includes $100 million in restitution and $25 million in penalties, is part of an agreement the bank reached with the Securities and Exchange Commission and the office of New York Attorney General Eliot L. Spitzer.
Smoked Salmon Recalled
Smoked salmon sold in Virginia and three other states was recalled by Golden Eagle Smoked Foods because the food may contain listeria monocytogenes, an organism that can cause fatal infections in young children and cause miscarriages or stillbirths. The products were sold in 2- and 4-pound packages under the names Imperial Salmon House, Superior brand Norwegian Cure and Golden Eagle Smoked Salmon. For more information, call 305-512-5900 or visit www.fda.gov.
MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS
Maytag Drops on Haier Pullout
Maytag shares fell 11 percent, to $15.61, after China's Haier Group pulled out of the three-way contest for the No. 3 U.S. appliance maker. Whirlpool is the top bidder at $17 a share, topping the $16 offer by Haier and the $14 bid from buyout firm Ripplewood Holdings. A Whirlpool purchase of Maytag would give the combined company almost 50 percent of the U.S. market and help it fend off overseas rivals. It would also face antitrust scrutiny.
Toyota Recalling Minivans
Toyota said it would recall 345,000 Sienna minivans from the 2004 and 2005 models years to replace a seat belt piece that might cause part of the belt in some seats to get stuck. The company said it knew of no accidents or injuries from the problem. Toyota said it was also recalling about 2,500 of this year's model of the Tundra Access Cab pickup trucks to replace a wrong lens installed over a light.
Pfizer, the world's biggest drug company, said second-quarter profit rose 21 percent, to $3.46 billion, helped by an $816 million accounting adjustment and strong sales of the cholesterol drug Lipitor. Revenue rose 1 percent, to $12.43 billion.
J.P. Morgan Chase swung to a $994 million second-quarter profit from a loss of $548 million in the corresponding period last year. The nation's third-largest bank said results were affected by costs from legal settlements and a drop in trading revenue. Revenue rose 48 percent, to $12.7 billion.
United Technologies said second-quarter earnings rose 19 percent, to $971 million, as it sold more jet-engine parts and Otis elevators and services. Sales rose 16 percent, to $11.2 billion.
Washington Mutual said its second-quarter profit rose 73 percent, to $844 million.
Compiled from staff and news service reports.