Among the companies whose shares are expected to see active trade in Friday's session are International Business Machines Corp., Merck & Co. and VeriSign Inc.

The Friday session ends early, at 1 p.m. Eastern, following the market's closure on Thursday for the Thanksgiving holiday.

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On Wednesday, BearingPoint Inc. (BE) said it has filed its 2005 results with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The technology consulting company had delayed the filing due to the "uncertainties" created by a court finding that it is in default on its 2.75 percent Series B convertible subordinated debentures due in 2024.

Danaher Corp. (DHR) said the offer period for its tender offer to buy all of the shares of Vision Systems Ltd. (VSL) has been extended to close on Dec. 8.

DryShips Inc. (DRYS) said Gregory Zikos has been appointed chief financial officer, and a director. Zikos had been in structured finance transactions for a Greek construction firm.

Frontier Oil Corp. (FTO) said the Los Angeles Superior Court hearing the initial Beverly Hills lawsuit has entered a ruling granting summary judgment in favor of all defendants, including Frontier and its subsidiary Wainoco Oil & Gas Co.

IBM (IBM) said it has agreed to pay $65 million to resolve all claims in an overtime-pay, class-action suit filed in a Northern California federal court in January.

The federal judge overseeing thousands of lawsuits filed against Merck (MRK) over its recalled drug Vioxx ruled on Wednesday that personal-injury cases cannot be compiled into a class-action suit.

Mills Corp. (MLS) said it has completed a restructured transaction with Colony Capital Acquisitions LLC and KanAm USA Management XXII LP regarding the Meadowlands Xanadu project.

Systemax Inc. (SYX) said second-quarter net income rose, as revenue gained, to $7.11 million, or 19 cents a share, from $1.52 million, or 4 cents a share, during the same period in the prior year.

U.S.B. Holding Co.'s (UBH) board has declared a quarterly cash dividend of 15 cents a share, 7.1% higher than in the prior quarter. The dividend is payable Jan. 15 to shareholders as of Dec. 29.

Veeco Instruments Inc. (VECO) said its board has formed a succession planning committee. Edward Braun, chairman and chief executive, plans to move from his current role to chairman in 2007. Braun will serve as chief executive until a successor has been appointed.

VeriSign (VRSN) said it has identified stock-option grants with incorrect measurement dates, without required documentation, or with initial grant dates and prices that were subsequently modified. The company said it sees non-cash charges to financial statements for 2001 to 2005 of up to $250 million.

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