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In brief: AIG settles fraud suit

COLUMBUS, Ohio – American International Group Inc. and some of its directors and officers have agreed to a $725 million settlement to resolve allegations of wide-ranging fraud laid out in a class action suit led by three Ohio pension funds.

Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray said Friday the latest figure will combine with previous AIG settlements reached with secondary defendants to pay about $1 billion to shareholders, including pensions representing firefighters, police, teachers, librarians and others. He characterized it as the 10th largest securities litigation settlement in U.S. history.

The lawsuit alleged anti-competitive market division, accounting violations, and stock price manipulation by AIG between October 1999 and April 2005.

Associated Press

Airlines prep for deadline

FORT WORTH, Texas – Airlines are buying giant X-ray machines and other machinery to meet an Aug. 1 deadline to begin screening all cargo that goes on passenger planes.

Federal officials say the new rules will close a large security gap. Just four years ago, only half of all cargo was inspected.

But the system to guard against terrorists getting a bomb on a plane is far from airtight. Cargo coming into the U.S. from other countries is still often not inspected.

Associated Press

TORONTO – The Canadian government said Friday it will spend $8.5 billion to purchase a new wave of fighter jets from U.S. aerospace giant Lockheed Martin Corp.

The deal to purchase 65 F-35 Lightning II joint strike fighter jets marks one of the biggest military equipment purchases in the country’s history, said Defense Minister Peter MacKay.

MacKay said the new jets would replace the air force’s aging fleet of CF-18s that recently underwent a $2.4 billion upgrade. The planes will be 40 years old when they need another upgrade in 2020.

Associated Press

From wire reports

• Computer maker Dell Inc. said Friday it’s getting closer to settling investigations by regulators into its accounting and the actions of CEO Michael Dell. The computer maker has proposed settlements to the staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission, which the staff will recommend to the commissioners, the company said.

• Hoping the third time would be the charm, the three Trump casinos in Atlantic City emerged from bankruptcy court on Friday with much less debt and more optimism about competing in the cutthroat East Coast casino market. The Chapter 11 filing was the third for Trump Entertainment Resorts or its corporate predecessors. The bankruptcy eliminated $1.3 billion worth of debt that had been choking the company.

Cost cutting and an improved financial business helped General Electric Co. post its first increase in quarterly profit since 2007 on Friday, but sales remained sluggish for the industrial and financial giant. GE’s quarterly net income rose 16 percent to $3.0 billion, or 28 cents per share. GE’s revenue slipped 4 percent as industries like transportation were down.


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