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Microsoft Talks Dead, Stock Drops

In response to the breakdown of negotiations between Microsoft Corp. and the U.S. Department of Justice and judge Thomas Penfield Jackson's ruling that the company is in violation of the Sherman Anti-trust Act, Microsoft's stock price dropped 15.375 points from Friday's Nasdaq market close to $90.875.

The talks between Microsoft (www.microsoft.com) and the Justice Department finally broke down Friday night, when the mediator assigned to the case, U.S. Court of Appeals Chief Judge Richard Posner, resigned.

In a statement released Saturday, Posner called the breakdown of the talks "disappointing, not only because of the amount of time that so many busy professionals, officials, and executives have devoted to the mediation, but also because the public interest would have been served by avoiding further litigation." Posner went on to explain that because of the confidential nature of the mediation, he would not reveal any of its content, but criticized the "good deal of leaking and spinning" that has surrounded the proceedings as one reason for his leaving the table.

Posner thanked Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson for his work in the case as well as for "according me the honor of asking me to mediate this complex, fascinating, and immensely important case."

Jackson's ruling is expected to be handed down this after the market close today. - Isaac Slepner

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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