Business & Finance
Royal Dutch/Shell announced it will buy smaller British rival Enterprise Oil PLC for $5 billion. The deal also includes the assumption of about $900 million in debt. Enterprise, Britain's last independently owned oil company, is best known as a major operator in the North Sea.
Andersen Spain, the main European arm of troubled auditor Arthur Andersen LLP, announced plans to merge with Deloitte & Touche, the world's No. 2 accounting firm. The decision disrupted talks on a proposed union of Andersen's non-US operations with Netherlands-based rival KPMG. Meanwhile, Pacific Capital Bancorp, Newell Rubbermaid Inc., SPX Corp., and Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts Inc. joined the more than 100 firms that have dropped Andersen since the start of the year.
Xerox agreed to pay a record $10 million fine and to restate five years of financial results to settle allegations of misleading accounting practices by the Securities and Exchange Commission. Under the agreement, the Stamford, Conn.-based copier giant will neither admit nor deny wrongdoing.
Fairchild Dornier, a leader in building short-haul jets, filed for protection from creditors, becoming the No. 1 casualty of the battered aerospace industry after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. The company, jointly owned by US and German investors, is based in Munich. Fairchild Dornier employs 3,600 people in Germany and about 700 in the US. Its filing dealt a second major blow to the German economy in less than two weeks. The giant construction company Philipp Holzmann AG collapsed March 23.