Business & Finance

United Airlines has asked a federal bankruptcy court in Chicago for additional time to file its reorganization plan, calling the document "a work in progress" on which "much work remains to be done." Under terms of its Chapter 11 protection, the carrier has until April 8 to submit detailed plans for recovery. It sought an extension until Oct. 6.

Ford Motor Co. announced it is rescinding a controversial order by president Nick Scheele that all of the auto-maker's advertising and marketing be directed to an agency for which his son, James Scheele, works. The issue, which surfaced in published reports earlier this week, "is now behind us; case closed," a company spokesman said.

Struggling engineering giant Alstom SA said it is selling its most profitable assets for a hoped-for $3.2 billion. The company, which builds ships, trains, and electricity-generating equipment, wants to unload its transmission/distribution and industrial turbines units as part of a plan to cut debt. Alstom is based in Paris.

A leading magazine publisher took itself out of the bidding for Germany's bankrupt KirchMedia empire, leaving American TV billionaire Haim Saban as the lone remaining potential buyer. Bauer Verlag of Hamburg and Saban both were offering about $2.2 billion for KirchMedia's TV assets and the rights to its vast film library, but the former said it was unwilling to go higher after Saban upped his bid to $2.3 billion.

The chief executive officer of troubled Clariant Ltd., the world's second-largest maker of specialty chemicals, resigned under pressure after presiding over two years of losses and a 70 percent drop in the company's share price. Clariant also announced it has canceled a plan, which is opposed by investors, to try to raise more than $450 million in new capital through the sale of additional stock. The company is based in Muttenz, Switzerland.

Another 265 layoffs or job cuts were announced by Herman Miller Inc., a leading maker of office furniture. The Zeeland, Mich., company eliminated 600 jobs last year and, according to published reports, has reduced its payroll by 3,400 since December 2000.

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