Hailing what he termed thelargest-ever class-action settlement in the modern history of Americancommodities trading, a Manhattan federal judge yesterday approved a $139million accord between traders and defendants, who allegedly conspiredto corner the market in copper and manipulate the price of contracts incopper futures.

Judge Milton Pollack of theSouthern District of New York granted certification to a class definedas all persons trading in copper futures or options from June 1993 to June1996, and said that the settlement was in the best interest of all partiesto the suit and the court.

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