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DOW DOLLAR BONDS 30 Industrials VS Japanese Yen 30-Year U.S.

3027.95 138.85 yen 8.34%

-7.38 -0.30 +0.01

The stock market settled at mostly mixed levels Tuesday after successfully absorbing a bout of profit-taking. The Dow Jones average of 30 industrial stocks slipped 7.38 points to 3,027.95. Analysts were not surprised by the decline, considering the Dow had posted gains in nine out of the previous 10 sessions.


U.S., Japan agree

on computer chips

The United States and Japan reached agreement Tuesday on raising Japan's purchase of foreign computer chips, resolving one of the most contentious trade disputes between the nations.

As part of the five-year pact, the United States agreed to end $164-million in penalty tariffs imposed in 1987 on certain high-tech Japanese imports in retaliation for Japanese dumping of computer chips in this country.

U.S. negotiators said the pact will boost the foreign share of the Japanese semiconductor market to 20 percent by the end of 1992, although the pact does not set a rigid standard.

The current U.S. share of the Japanese market, the world's largest, is 12.3 percent, and the total foreign share is 13.2 percent.

The U.S. world market share for semiconductors _ the tiny silicon chips that run everything from watches to computers _ dropped from 57 percent to 35 percent during the 1980s, while Japan's grew from 27 percent to 50 percent.

SENATOR ASSAILS SALARIES. Salaries of big-business executives are "spiraling out of control," Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., said Tuesday as he introduced legislation to give shareholders a bigger voice in setting the pay of top company officers. The bill would allow stockholder votes on salaries and other compensation of chief executive officers and directors. It also would require broader disclosure of pay packages. Levin's subcommittee Tuesday heard a report that the average chief executive at a major U.S. corporation receives 110 times the pay of the average worker, compared to 23 times for the average German CEO and 17 times in Japan.

REPORT CLEARS COMPTROLLER. The Treasury Department said Tuesday that Robert L. Clarke, the comptroller of the currency, did not violate any government ethics rules by investing in stocks and high-yield bonds and also borrowing money from a bank that later came under the jurisdiction of his office. A report by Jeanne S. Archibald, the Treasury's general counsel, said Clarke's investments "may give rise to an appearance of a conflict" of interest but that Clarke had taken appropriate steps to avoid such an appearance by deciding to put his holdings in a blind trust. He still faces Senate reconfirmation hearings.

AUTO SLUMP PERSISTS. Sales of North American-made vehicles tumbled 14.5 percent in late May, despite signs of a strengthening economy, automakers said Tuesday. For all of May, the three U.S.-owned automakers said sales fell 12.6 percent, while the seven Japanese companies with U.S. plants said sales fell 5.9 percent. For the first five months of 1991, total sales were down 16.5 percent. For the last 10-day period, GM's sales were down 18.1 percent; Ford's were off 20.8 percent; and the Associated Press estimated Chrysler's fell 19 percent.

GAS KEEPS RISING. Gasoline prices posted an increase for the week ending Tuesday, the American Automobile Association said. The average nationwide price for a gallon of self-serve regular unleaded was $1.172, up 1 cent from a week earlier. It was the 12th increase in 13 weeks.

Tampa Bay/State

CABLE BILLING PLAN DROPPED. A cable television company Tuesday backed off on plans to bill customers automatically for a new pay channel, but Florida's attorney general's office vowed to pursue its lawsuit. Denver-based Tele-Communications Inc. announced it will charge only those cable customers who decide they want to subscribe to the Encore movie channel. Previously, TCI planned to bill subscribers for the service unless they specifically called to cancel it. A Florida judge temporarily banned TCI's Storer Cable TV of Florida from airing the channel on its systems in Broward, Dade and Seminole counties. Joe Bizzaro, a spokesman for Attorney General Bob Butterworth, said the state will continue its action against Storer because Tuesday's decision does not address all aspects of Florida trade law.

FIRM CONSIDERS TAMPA. Arbitration Forums Inc., an insurance arbitration and mediation company based in Tarrytown, N.Y., is considering Tampa among several cities for a relocation of its headquarters, a company official said Tuesday. The non-profit company wants to leave New York state to cut costs before its lease expires in 1992, said Tom Clarke, secretary-treasurer. The company employs about 60 people in the headquarters office north of New York City, but Clarke said he does not know how many people would be moved.