Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

States Sue Microsoft, While Holding Millions in Stock

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

States Sue Microsoft, While Holding Millions in Stock

Article excerpt

BOSTON (AP) -- Across the country, 19 states are costing themselves billions of dollars -- at least on paper. When one part of the government takes Microsoft to court, another tries to invest wisely on behalf of retired state-government employees.

The lawsuit by the states and the Justice Department led Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson to order a breakup of Microsoft, a decision that is expected to be appealed to the Supreme Court. The case has raised uncertainty about Microsoft's future and caused its stock price to plummet, roiling pension fund portfolios from Sacramento to Boston.

Massachusetts' $32 billion pension fund held $313.8 million in Microsoft stock as of June 30, according to the state's Pension Reserve Investment Management Board. That makes Microsoft the fourth- largest stock holding in the fund, behind only General Electric, Cisco Systems and Intel.

Other states with larger investments have even more to lose than Massachusetts, as the future of Microsoft -- whose stock price has fallen 38 percent since the beginning of the year -- remains unclear. …

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