Microsoft Violated Anti-Trust Laws — U.S. District Court Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson has ruled that Microsoft Corporation violated the Sherman Anti-Trust Act by using its position in the Web browser market to "the detriment of competitors." The judge also found that Microsoft could be liable under state anti-competition laws. Judge Jackson must now schedule hearings later this year to consider remedies for Microsoft’s actions, which could include structural changes to the company, business restrictions, or an actual breakup of the company. The only major point on which Judge Jackson disagreed with the government’s case was that Microsoft’s marketing arrangements with other companies did not ultimately exclude Netscape’s browser software from the worldwide browser market. Microsoft has repeatedly said it would appeal any ruling against it; experts estimate the case could easily drag out to the year 2002. Microsoft stock was down nearly 15 percent in anticipation of Judge Jackson’s announcement, dragging the NASDAQ index down 7.63 percent in its largest single-day point decline in history. [GD]
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