Originally created 05/29/99

Additional business news



MCI WorldCom purchasing SkyTel

NEW YORK -- MCI WorldCom said Friday it is buying pager company SkyTel Communications for nearly $1.3 billion in stock, announcing the deal just days after the companies scuttled rumors they were discussing a merger.

MCI WorldCom said it would pay stock worth $21.24 for each share of SkyTel.

The agreement announced Friday comes amid a frenzy of deal-making that's reshaping the communications industry, with phone companies such as Bell Atlantic and GTE merging and AT&T spending about $100 billion on cable TV properties it plans to use for phone calls and Internet access.

Workers' claims to be taken

Former employees of the William Carter Co. in Sandersville, Ga., may be eligible for compensation because they lost their jobs because of foreign import competition.

Claims by former employees of the company will be taken on June 11 at the Georgia Department of Labor's Augusta office.

Those eligible could receive up to 78 weeks of jobless benefits. The maximum weekly benefit amount is $244. For more information, call 721-3131.

Strike may cool hot auto sales

DETROIT -- A threatened Teamsters strike against the nation's car haulers next week could put the brakes on the auto industry's sales, which are up 9 percent this year.

Negotiators are working against a deadline of 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, when the contract expires. Earlier this month, the truckers voted 5,705-251 to give their negotiating committee the power to call a strike if talks fail.

Job development credits OK'd

GREENVILLE, S.C. -- House members Thursday approved job development tax credits for companies with more than 7,000 employees and more than $1 billion invested in South Carolina.

In return, companies would enter into a five-year agreement with the state to invest an additional $400 million and create 400 jobs. Michelin and JPS Textile Group, both based in Greenville; Springs Industries in Fort Mill; and Milliken & Co. in Spartanburg could be among those benefiting.

Kodak fighting Fuji eruption

ROCHESTER, N.Y. -- A photographic film price war between Eastman Kodak Co. and Japanese nemesis Fuji is flaring up as the peak summer season nears, and Kodak appears to be losing ground on its home turf.

In the U.S. market, two retail surveys show that Tokyo-based Fuji grabbed 5 percentage points in unit sales at Kodak's expense during the first four months of 1999. Kodak still accounts for about two-thirds of the rolls of film sold in this country.

Judge orders halt to solicitations

A federal judge recently ordered a private corporation to stop sending fraudulent solicitations that offered to get Social Security numbers for newborn children and to change names on records for brides for $15.

The U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York issued a preliminary injunction May 21 against Federal Record Service Corp. It froze the company's assets and authorized the U.S. Postal Service to stop all incoming mail.

Anyone who paid the $15 fee to Federal Record Service Corp. can request a refund by calling or writing the company at (202) 973-2833; 2300 M Street N.W., Suite 800, Washington, D.C. 20037. The Social Security Administration can be reached at (800) 722-1213.