News In Brief

Profit-taking by investors sent major stock indices plummeting across Asia in reaction to the Tuesday drops in the closing Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite Index. In Tokyo, the Nikkei closed down more than 460 points, or 2.42 percent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell more than 1,000 points - its second-worst loss in history. In Seoul, the Korea Composite Stock Price Index experienced its worst one-day loss - 6.9 percent. Other drops were recorded in Singapore (5.5 percent), Manila (3.6 percent), Indonesia (3.2 percent), Bangkok, Thailand (6.5 percent), and New Zealand (2.4 per cent)

Regulators have been given 30 days to come up with plans to reverse a pattern of heavy financial losses by one of the largest health maintenance organizations in the Northeast. Harvard Pilgrim Health Care was ordered into receivership by a state court in Massachusetts after acknowledging it had underestimated its losses for 1999 - $177 million - by $77 million. Harvard Pilgrim also lost $94 million in 1998 and recently closed its Rhode Island operations, leaving 125,000 people scrambling for new coverage. The HMO has 1.1 million members in Massachusetts.

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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