Business & Finance

Travelers Property Casualty Corp. agreed to a merger with The St. Paul Cos. in a deal creating the nation's second-largest insurance group. The combined firm, with a market capitalization of about $20 billion, will be known as The St. Paul Travelers Co. and have its headquarters in Saint Paul, Minn., officials said. Travelers was spun off last year by parent company Citigroup.

Conrad Black resigned as chief executive of newspaper group Hollinger International and president David Radler also stepped down, as expected, after a minority shareholder sharply questioned multimillion-dollar fees paid to Black, his associates, and firms he controls. Black will become nonexecutive chairman effective Friday, the company said, at the same time announcing it is considering putting itself or some of its main properties up for sale. Chicago-based Hollinger publishes the Chicago Sun-Times, Britain's Daily Telegraph, and the Jerusalem Post, among other papers.

In the latest development in the mutual-fund probe, leading investment bank Morgan Stanley was expected to agree to a $50 million fine and to change some business practices to settle pending charges by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), The Wall Street Journal reported. The SEC planned to accuse Morgan Stanley of conflicts of interest in mutual-fund sales to investors, the Journal said, as part of an investigation into more than 15 brokerages.

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