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Microsoft's 11th-hour bid to settle its antitrust case appeared to have fallen short, leaving the outcome in the hands of a federal judge who in November concluded the company has used its software dominance to thwart competition. Sources close to the government said a settlement proposal by Microsoft sent to the Justice Department, 19 states, and the District of Columbia failed to acknowledge any wrongdoing or agree to significant restrictions in the way it develops and markets Windows, which runs more than 90 percent of the world's personal computers. If no progress is made settling the dispute out of court, Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson could issue a verdict tomorrow.

DaimlerChrysler is expected to announce today that it has bought a one-third stake in Japan's Mitsubishi Motors Corp. for $1.33 billion, ending speculation that such an arrangement was imminent. The deal will make DaimlerChrysler the world's third-largest automaker. In a related move, DaimlerChrysler also is likely to buy out the remaining half of Mitsubishi's 50-50 partnership in the Netherlands with Ford Motor Co.'s Volvo division, reports said. But it remained unclear whether Mitsubishi's truck division, in which Volvo is a minor partner, would be involved.

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