A Break in The Action

Texaco's Chapter 11 buys time -- and maybe more

The case won immediate fame as the biggest bankruptcy in U.S. history. Last week it threatened to become one of the most bewildering and perhaps most bitterly contested business crises in modern memory. The $10 billion legal battle royal between Texaco and Pennzoil clearly entered a new and murky phase after the country's third-ranking oil company (1986 sales: $32.6 billion) made its bombshell decision on Sunday, April 12, to file for Chapter 11 protection. Whichever side was right in the dispute, the horrendous legal tangle surrounding the two firms vastly increased -- along with the business uncertainty.

Nonetheless, as New York...

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