Pacific Northwest Microsoft is working with BlackBerry maker Research In Motion to put Live Search on the popular line of smartphones, the...

Share story

Pacific Northwest

Software

Microsoft is working with BlackBerry maker Research In Motion to put Live Search on the popular line of smartphones, the companies announced Thursday.

The deal could help Microsoft in its struggle to gain market share for its Internet search engine.

Microsoft has had a test version of its Live Search for BlackBerry as a stand-alone application since October 2007. Later this year, RIM and Microsoft plan to integrate Live Search with the BlackBerry Browser and Maps.

Microsoft already struck a deal to make Windows Live online services usable on BlackBerry phones.

Labor

Boeing strike info on state agency site

The state’s Employment Security Department has posted a special “Boeing strike information” page on its Web site with information for workers and companies affected by the Boeing strike.

Workers who are either on strike or refuse to cross a strike picket line are not eligible for unemployment benefits. But anyone laid off, at Boeing or another company, due to lack of work because of the strike may qualify for unemployment benefits.

The information page is accessible at www.esd.wa.gov. Click on “Boeing strike information.”

Real estate

Developer buys lodge building

A Seattle developer has purchased the Eagles lodge building in Seattle’s Georgetown neighborhood and plans to renovate it for office or retail use.

RSS Management, an affiliate of Slattery Properties of Seattle, paid the fraternal organization $3.73 million for the 24,000-square-foot building at Corson Avenue South and South Michigan Street, according to county records.

Bryan Hester of brokerage CB Richard Ellis said Slattery intends to remodel the interior to accommodate one to three retail or office tenants, but plans aren’t yet set. The 1955 building originally was a bowling alley.

A partnership that included three small theater groups had a tentative deal to buy the building earlier this year but couldn’t get financing.

Pacific Northwest

Biotechnology

Trubion wins in patent dispute

Trubion Pharmaceuticals has scored a victory in a patent fight that pitted it against bigger competitors.

The Seattle biotechnology company said Thursday that the European Patent Office, prompted by Trubion and other companies, overturned a patent held by Genentech and Biogen Idec for the use of an antibody targeting a receptor known as CD-20 in rheumatoid arthritis treatments.

Trubion is pursuing therapies based on anti-CD20 antibodies for the treatment of autoimmune and inflammatory diseases.

Genentech and Biogen Idec have the right to appeal.

Trubion’s stock closed at $3.65, up 10 cents, or 2.8 percent.

Aerospace

Ex-Boeing worker admits to damage

A disgruntled worker at a Boeing plant in suburban Philadelphia said he cut electrical wires on a $24 million Chinook military helicopter because he was upset about a job transfer.

Matthew Montgomery, 33, pleaded guilty Thursday to one count of destroying property under contract to the government.

According to federal prosecutors, Montgomery was working his last shift on the Chinook assembly line May 10 when he severed about 70 electrical wires running together from the cockpit to the main body of an H-47 Chinook. He had applied for several transfers to other Boeing facilities but was instead being moved to another job within the suburban Philadelphia plant, prosecutors said.

The damage he inflicted was easily spotted two days later by plant officials. The helicopter would not have been able to fly, prosecutors and his defense attorney agree.

Nation / World

Automotive

Report: Ford seeks 4,200 fewer workers

Ford has said that it wants to cut its blue-collar work force by another 4,200 employees, according to a person briefed on a presentation to union officials.

The struggling automaker is offering buyout and early-retirement packages as it continues efforts to trim its factory ranks to match lower demand for its products.

Ford has declined to publicly state a target number, but Joe Hinrichs, group vice president of global manufacturing, told union officials the company has 4,200 more blue-collar workers than it needs, according to the source.

Economy

Trade deficit leaps to 16-month high

The U.S. trade deficit soared in July to a 16-month high, the Commerce Department said, as oil imports hit an all-time high. While exports increased, economists expect slowing economies in Europe and Asia will reduce export growth later this year.

The Labor Department also reported that new applications for unemployment benefits fell less than expected last week as the struggling economy continues to take a toll on workers.

Financials

Ex-AIG execs, fund reach settlement

Attorneys for a Louisiana pension fund reached a $115 million settlement Thursday in a shareholder lawsuit against former executives of insurance giant American International Group (AIG).

The settlement was reached just days before trial was to begin in a lawsuit challenging hundreds of millions of dollars in commissions paid by AIG to C.V. Starr & Co., a privately held affiliate controlled by former AIG Chairman Maurice Greenberg and other AIG directors.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs said the settlement includes a $29.5 million payment from Greenberg and three other individual defendants, with the remaining $85.5 million covered by liability insurance.

Compiled from Seattle Times business staff, Bloomberg News and The Associated Press