SBD/3/Franchises

ITT REPORTS BIG 4THQ GAINS; MSG DEAL DONE IN TWO WEEKS?

     ITT's 4thQ profit "jumped" 39%, "driven by strong gains in
the company's automotive and hotel businesses," according to Eben
Shapiro in today's WALL STREET JOURNAL.  The results exceeded
Wall Street's expectations and ITT's stock rose $3.50 or 3.9%, to
$92.50/share.  ITT is in the midst of an "ambitious restructuring
that analysts believe may lead to its being split into three
separate companies based on its three broad business lines":
insurance, manufacturing, and hotels and entertainment.  ITT
Chair/CEO Rand Araskog said a restructuring has the potential to
"create a lot of happiness" among ITT shareholders.  At a meeting
with stock analysts, ITT said it may close its acquisition of
Madison Square Garden, which includes the Knicks & Rangers, in a
"week or two."  ITT also recently completed its tender offer for
Caesars World (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 2/3).
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