News In Brief

The spinoff of AT&T's wireless division as an independent company is scheduled for today, the Financial Times reported. With about 15.7 million subscribers, AT&T Wireless already ranks as the US's third-largest mobile communications provider. The move is the first of a series announced last year. Next month, AT&T's tracking stock, Liberty Media, also is due to be spun off, and in September the giant company plans to ask shareholders to OK two other innovations: an initial public offering for its broadband business and another tracking stock for its consumer long-distance operations.

Tentative agreement on a deal that would allow bankrupt LTV Steel to remain in business was reached between creditors and the United Steelworkers of America, the latter said late Friday. Details were not announced but reportedly cover contract concessions by unionized employees. The Cleveland-based steelmaker has said it has only enough cash on hand to last until September and will be forced to liquidate without a new labor pact that helps to lower annual operating expenses by at least $800 million. The creditors stepped in last month after weeks of negotiations between LTV and the union stalled and the company sought court permission to impose a less-generous new contract on its workers unilaterally. LTV is the US's third-largest integrated steelmaker and also has operations in Canada and Britain.

Step One in a new alliance that would link Delta Airlines with two major European carriers is expected to be approved today by directors of Alitalia, reports said. If true, the state-owned, but money-losing Italian airline would join Air France to operate flights between their two countries and then link with Delta on transatlantic routes.

(c) Copyright 2001. The Christian Science Monitor

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