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News In Brief

In a business day top-heavy with automotive news, the No. 1 story was the joint announcement in Detroit and Stockholm that Sweden's AB Volvo group would sell its passenger-car division to Ford for $6.45 billion. Volvo now plans to concentrate on trucks, buses, marine engines, construction equipment, and its aerospace business.

In a $7 billion deal, Cleveland-based auto-parts manufacturer TRW Inc. said it will buy LucasVarity, a British producer of brake systems. Both companies also have aerospace divisions.

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Yahoo! Inc. speeded up the pace of Internet consolidations with the announcement that it will buy GeoCities Inc., a Santa Monica, Calif., Web-page host company, for $4.58 billion. A union of Yahoo! and GeoCities traffic could make the combined firms No. 1 in terms of Internet use, according to industry figures. The terms represent a substantial premium over GeoCities' current market valuation of about $3.02 billion, including outstanding stock options. Last week, in a $6.7 billion deal, Yahoo! rival Excite Inc. agreed to be purchased by At Home Corp.

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