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Auction-Rate Securities Give Firms Grief

By Liz Rappaport
Word Count: 605  |  Companies Featured in This Article: Google, Bed Bath & Beyond, Starbucks, Spansion, ImClone Systems

The credit crisis is receding, but hundreds of U.S. companies still are struggling to clean up the problems caused by auction-rate securities.

A review of first-quarter earnings reports showed that more than 400 companies, including Google Inc., Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. and Starbucks Corp., held at least $30 billion in the securities, instruments they once thought were as dependable as cash.

Some companies have had to scramble for funds in the months since the market froze up in February. The securities also are creating an accounting problem for businesses not used to pricing complicated securities. While some companies have ...

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