Reform of lending laws opposedThe Clinton administration...

BUSINESS DIGEST

June 21, 1995

Reform of lending laws opposed

The Clinton administration is "very strongly opposed" to a bill that would exempt many of the nation's banks from key fair lending laws, Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin said yesterday.

With his statement, Mr. Rubin became the second top administration official in a week to condemn a broad bank deregulation bill moving through the House.

Attorney General Janet Reno said Thursday that the Financial Institutions Regulatory Relief Act would "turn the clock back on civil rights" by limiting the Justice Department's ability to initiate lending discrimination cases against banks.

Citicorp to repurchase stock

Citicorp, flush with billions of dollars more than it can spend, said yesterday it will buy back as much as $3 billion, or about 13 percent, of its stock.

Citicorp has been under pressure all year from investors and analysts to use some of its $27 billion in capital to buy back stock.

The company's shares gained $1.65 yesterday, to $58.75, on the New York Stock Exchange.

IBM plans no changes to OS/2

IBM says it does not intend to modify its OS/2 operating system so that it can run programs designed for rival Microsoft's Windows 95 operating system.

The news, delivered yesterday at the PC Expo computer show in New York, was described as a high-risk move by IBM to press software developers to make products specifically for the OS/2 platform. Microsoft Windows is the dominant platform for what have commonly been called IBM-compatible personal computers, and computer users and developers have been waiting for years for Microsoft to make a more powerful version, now scheduled to go on sale Aug. 24.

ValuJet workers reject union

Mechanics at ValuJet Airlines Inc. have voted against joining the Teamsters union, the company said yesterday.

Atlanta-based ValuJet said it was informed of the vote by the National Mediation Board. According to the airline, 11 of 31 mechanics eligible to vote favored union representation. Flight attendants at ValuJet earlier this month voted to join the Association of Flight Attendants.

Mercedes-Benz considers U.S.

Mercedes-Benz AG said yesterday it is studying plans to build a car in the United States in addition to its new sport utility vehicle, scheduled to go into production in 1997.

"If the [sport utility] project and vehicle prove to be a success, then we may be in a position to think about building another vehicle [in the U.S.]," said Linda Paulmeno, head of communications for Mercedes-Benz U.S. International, the Tuscaloosa, Ala.-based company formed to produce the sport utility vehicle.

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