Tuesday, May 20, 2003

Business Digest

WorldCom will pay $500M in fraud case

NEW YORK - WorldCom Inc. has agreed to pay investors a record $500 million to settle civil fraud charges over its $11 billion accounting scandal, which was the biggest in U.S. corporate history, lawyers for the company and federal government said Monday.

The fine would be by far the largest the Securities and Exchange Commission has ever imposed. WorldCom, a bankrupt telecommunications titan, , is accused of falsifying balance sheets to hide expenses and inflate earnings. Under the settlement, WorldCom neither admits nor denies the charges.

Attorneys for the two sides presented the proposed settlement to U.S. District Judge Jed S. Rakoff in Manhattan, who said he would consider the deal and would not rule before June 11.

The settlement actually calls for WorldCom to be fined $1.51 billion, an amount that would be reduced to $500 million as part of the company's bankruptcy case, in which many creditors have to settle for less money than they are owed.

Average yield on year Treasury bills lower

WASHINGTON - The average yield for one-year Treasury bills, a popular index for making changes in adjustable rate mortgages, edged down slightly last week.

The Federal Reserve reported Monday that the yield on one-year Treasury bills dipped to 1.20 percent last week compared to 1.23 percent for the week ending May 9.

Separately, the Treasury Department announced that it had postponed its normal weekly auction of three-month and six-month Treasury bills, normally held on Monday, until today.

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