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November 08, 2003

* Berkshire Hathaway Inc., the investment company run by billionaire Warren E. Buffett, said third-quarter profit increased 58% to $1.8 billion, or $1,176 a share, from $1.14 billion, or $744, a year earlier. Revenue climbed 72% to $18.2 billion, partly from the purchase of food distributor McLane Co.

* Chiron Corp. agreed to settle a lawsuit that claimed Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc. violated patents on a treatment for the hepatitis C virus. Chiron will be able to review Vertex's treatment and possibly license it, the companies said.

* PeopleSoft Inc.'s offer to indemnify customers in the event of a takeover by Oracle Corp. will cost too much and prevent stakeholders from accepting a sweetened offer, a group of PeopleSoft's shareholders argued in a lawsuit made public Friday.

* Jeffrey Bezos, chief executive and founder of Amazon.com Inc., sold $22.4 million of his company shares.

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