Simplicity drives high-tech success, 3Com chief says

Herald news services

SEATTLE — Eric Benhamou says that "radical simplicity" is the key to bringing high technology to the world. It’s also the key to bringing his company, 3Com Corp., to new prosperity.

The chairman of the company that originated the Palm handheld computer said Monday that 3Com’s adherence to this principle will help the company be a better corporation as well as a better corporate citizen.

Benhamou was in Seattle to speak at a conference called "Creating Digital Dividends"

  • T-bill rates mixed: Interest rates on short-term Treasury securities were mixed in Monday’s auction. Three-month bills sold at a discount rate of 6.080 percent, up from 6.075 percent last week. Six-month bills sold at a rate of 5.990 percent, down from 6.055 percent. The discount rates understate the actual return to investors — 6.261 percent for three-month bills with a $10,000 bill selling for $9,846.30 and 6.262 percent for a six-month bill selling for $9,697.20. In a separate report, the Federal Reserve said Monday that the average yield for one-year Treasury bills, the most popular index for making changes in adjustable rate mortgages, dipped to 5.98 percent last week from 6.06 percent the previous week.

  • Record earnings: Frontier Financial Corporation announced record third-quarter earnings of $8.4 million, up from $7.5 million in the same quarter of 1999, an increase of 12.7 percent. The increase marked the 67th consecutive quarter in which Frontier earnings exceeded the prior year’s comparable quarter. Diluted earnings per share for the third quarter were 42 cents compared with 37 cents for the third quarter of 1999.

  • Microsoft shares drop: Shares of Microsoft fell sharply Monday, hitting a two-year low amid concern about the future of the personal computing market. Microsoft Corp. closed at $50.38, down $3.38, or 6.3 percent.

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