US Airways Group filed for bankruptcy, the biggest carrier to fold since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks sent the industry into a tailspin. The company, based in Arlington, Va., said it would continue to operate while it reorganizes, a process expected to be complete early next year. US Airways, the sixth-largest US airline, is negotiating with its unions, vendors, and creditors on cost concessions needed to win federal guarantees for $1 billion in new loans.

Accusing federal authorities of a smear campaign against him, bio-warfare expert Steven Hatfill strongly denied any involvement in last fall's anthrax mailings. At a press conference Sunday in Alexandria, Va., Hatfill said calculated media leaks had caused "a feeding frenzy operating to my great prejudice." The former Army researcher has been identified as among 30 "persons of interest" in the case, and the FBI has searched his apartment twice, with no charges filed. The anthrax attacks killed five people and made more than a dozen ill.

Despite marginal signs of recovery, the US isn't likely to slip back into recession, a survey of almost 200 economists by the National Association for Business Economics said. The pronouncement was released prior to Tuesday's meeting of Federal Reserve policymakers and was likely to dim market speculation of a further cut in key interest rates. The economy also is the focus of a one-day forum – some observers have dubbed it a summit – that President Bush is chairing Tuesday at Baylor University in Waco, Texas.

A procedural security matter, not nationality, was behind a Comair pilot's refusal to carry a senior Israeli diplomat last week, a spokeswoman for the airline said. The Israeli Embassy is discussing the incident with the State Department. In an interview with an Israeli radio station, Deputy Foreign Minister Michael Melchior said he was told he posed a security risk and was barred from a flight Thursday from Cincinnati to Toronto. He took another Comair flight a half-hour later. Comair is a subsidiary of Delta Air Lines.

ImClone Systems founder and former chief executive Samuel Waksal pleaded not guilty to charges of obstruction of justice and bank fraud in US District Court in Manhattan. Waksal already had been charged with insider trading and perjury for allegedly warning family members and friends in advance that the Food and Drug Administration was rejecting a new drug being developed by the biotech company.

While stressing that a strike isn't a sure thing yet, the union representing Major League Baseball players was to set a date for a possible walkout Monday morning. The main sticking point in negotiations with team owners: a proposed luxury tax on teams with high payrolls in an effort to limit player salaries that currently average $2.38 million per season. The last baseball strike, in 1994-95, cancelled more than 900 regular season games and the World Series.

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