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AGE DISCRIMINATION Firm will pay $57M for targeting older workers OVERLAND PARK, KAN. (AP) � Sprint Nextel Corp. said that it will pay $57 million to settle a class action claiming that the firm targeted older workers during layoffs up to six years ago. The suit, filed a Kansas federal court in 2003, claimed Sprint illegally moved employees older than 40 to positions that were then eliminated as part of the company’s downsizing. The settlement would cover 1,697 former employees of the wireless company who were laid off between Oct. 1, 2001, and March 31, 2003. BAD FAITH State Farm pays $6.8M to settle class action FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (AP) � State Farm Insurance Co. will pay almost $6.8 million to settle a class action by Florida policyholders who said the insurer unfairly depreciated claims for screen enclosures damaged in hurricanes Katrina and Wilma. State Farm paid actual cash value instead of the full replacement value to about 12,000 customers whose screen enclosures were damaged by the 2005 storms. But policyholders argued insurance policies did not allow State Farm to depreciate the claims. BREACH OF CONTRACT $36M for businessman cut out of lumber deal HONOLULU (AP) � A Hawaii state jury has awarded more than $36 million in damages to a Houston businessman who claimed he was secretly cut out of the sale of one of the state’s largest lumber suppliers to a Cleveland-based investment firm. Key Principal Partners LLC, an affiliate of financial services firm KeyCorp, was ordered to pay Richard R. Foreman $12.1 million in compensatory damages and $13.6 million in punitive damages for leaving him out of the sale of Honsador Lumber Corp. in 2004. Under Hawaii’s unfair competition law, however, the violation allows Foreman to collect triple the $12.1 million, or $36.3 million, instead of taking the punitive damages. Foreman alleged a group of investors led by him had reached an agreement to buy Honsador for $28 million. Key Principal had agreed to join his venture but then secretly negotiated a deal with the Honsador owner for the higher amount. CONSUMER PROTECTION Judge OKs $64M Paxil class action settlement ST. LOUIS (AP) � An Illinois state judge has given final approval to a $64 million class action deal involving the antidepressant Paxil. The deal settles claims that the maker of the drug misled consumers about its safety. Under the deal, parents with proof they bought the GlaxoSmithKline PLC drug for their children can recoup out-of-pocket expenses. The company and the Food and Drug Administration last year warned that clinical trial data revealed a higher frequency of suicidal behavior in young adults treated with Paxil. The FDA reported 11 suicide attempts among patients given Paxil in the trials. None resulted in death. INSURANCE WTC builders, insurers reach $2B settlement NEW YORK (AP) � The builders of the World Trade Center site have reached a $2 billion settlement with seven insurers that ends all outstanding legal battles over its multibillion-dollar policy. The $2 billion, added to $2.55 billion already paid out since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks that destroyed the trade center, is about $130 million less than the amount awarded to rebuild the site after a trial in 2004. Trade center developer Larry Silverstein, who leased the twin towers weeks before they collapsed, took out a $3.5 billion policy. He went to court to argue that he should receive two payouts because the two hijacked planes that crashed into the towers represented two attacks instead of one. Silverstein was awarded $4.6 billion in 2004. PRODUCTS LIABILITY Chemical company must pay $122M for explosion LONDON, KY. (AP) � A Kentucky state jury has ordered Hexion Specialty Chemicals Inc. to pay $122 million to an insulation plant where seven people were killed in an explosion four years ago. CTA Acoustics Inc. used combustible dust made by Hexion to make insulation for heating systems and Ford vehicles. Accumulating dust sparked the explosion. CTA argued that Hexion had failed to warn of the danger posed by the powered resin Durite. REGULATORY ACTION Financial firm, SEC settle inflated earnings charges WASHINGTON (AP) � Bisys Group Inc., a financial services provider, has agreed to pay $25 million in restitution to settle U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission charges that it violated financial reporting rules to inflate earnings by some $180 million over three years. SEC officials said it was the agency’s first case highlighting the role of mutual fund administrators helping investment advisers illegally use fund assets to pay marketing expenses. Mutual fund investors unknowingly paid millions of dollars for marketing their funds as a result of the company’s misconduct.

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