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BUSINESS TODAY

LUCENT TO BUY NETWORK

CONSULTANT: Lucent Technologies Inc. of Murray Hill, N.J., is buying International Network Services Inc. of Sunnyvale, Calif., for about $3.7-billion, bolstering Lucent's push into the fast-growing arena of advising corporations on setting up high-speed data networks. Lucent, the No. 1 phone equipmentmaker, will pay 0.8473 of a share, or about $54, for each share of

International Network, 14 percent more than Monday's close. Adding the world's biggest network services consultant will help

Lucent compete against Cisco Systems and Nortel Networks.

AIRLINES EXTEND BENEFITS: US Airways plans to offer benefits to employees' domestic partners in addition to husbands and wives. The airline is the third major carrier to announce such a policy within two weeks. United Airlines said it would extend benefits to domestic partners July 30. American Airlines followed suit Thursday. US Airways said an executive will meet with employee representatives to discuss details and timing of the program.

WEB ON WHEELS: General Motors Corp. plans to offer voice-activated Internet access in a car. The automaker has formed an independent unit called "e-GM" to coordinate and expand its global electronic commerce activities. GM will test-market a car _ probably a Cadillac _ with World Wide Web access in the fall. The "Web car" will be offered nationally by late 2000. Ford Motor Co. and DaimlerChrysler AG are working on similar systems, but spokesmen said the companies were not prepared to say when, or if, they would offer on-board Internet access.

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