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Archive for Wednesday, July 11, 2001

Briefcase

July 11, 2001

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Charming Shoppes buys Lane Bryant chain

Specialty clothing retailer The Limited Inc. is selling its Lane Bryant chain of women's apparel stores to Charming Shoppes Inc. for $335 million in cash and stock.

The Limited, which operates more than 2,700 stores under Express, Lerner New York, Henri Bendel and other names, said the deal announced Tuesday for Lane Bryant would enable it to focus on its core fashion brands.

The sale includes $280 million in cash and $55 million in stock. The deal is expected to close by October.

Investing: Merrill Lynch limits analysts' stock buys

Merrill Lynch & Co. became the first major brokerage Tuesday to ban its analysts from buying stock in companies they research, a move designed to counter growing concern that analysts may be biased in their public assessments of stocks.

The measure addressed one area of concern the potential for an analyst to have a direct, personal interest in touting a particular stock. But critics of the industry were quick to note that it does not deal with the potentially larger problem of influence on analysts from their firms' lucrative investment banking businesses.

Acquisition; Amerada Hess to buy Triton Energy Ltd.

Amerada Hess Corp. said Tuesday it would pay $2.7 billion for Dallas-based Triton Energy Ltd., an independent oil-exploration company with operations off the coast of West Africa.

New York-based Amerada Hess said it would buy Triton's shares for $45 each, a premium of 52 percent over Triton's closing per share price Monday. Amerada Hess also would assume $500 million in Triton debt.

Retail: Sears trims cosmetics, puts Avon brand on hold

Sears, Roebuck and Co. is dropping its skin care and color cosmetics business, resulting in a $53 million charge in the second quarter, the company announced Tuesday.

Sears also reached an agreement with Avon Products Inc. that its department stores will not launch Avon's new retail brand, beComing, this fall.

Telecommunications: Lucent combines units

Struggling telecommunications equipment maker Lucent Technologies Inc. is consolidating its five internal business divisions into two primary operating units.

Mobility, comprised mostly of the company's Wireless Networks Group, will handle wireless communications products, Lucent said Tuesday. Integrated Network Solutions combines data networking, optical networking, switching and software platforms for wired communications networks.

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