Hewlett-Packard chairwoman to step down

•SAN JOSE, Calif. - Hewlett-Packard Chairwoman Patricia Dunn will step down in January and be succeeded by CEO Mark Hurd amid a widening scandal involving the computer and printer company's possibly illegal probe into media leaks.

Criminal investigation of Freddie Mac ended

• WASHINGTON - Mortgage finance giant Freddie Mac will not face criminal charges in connection with its multibillion-dollar accounting scandal, the company said Tuesday.

The Justice Department began investigating the accounting of the government-sponsored company, which is the second-largest financer of home loans in the country, after Freddie Mac disclosed in June 2003 that it had misstated earnings by some $5 billion - mostly underreported - for 2000-2002. The investigation is said to have been inactive for two years. Freddie Mac officials say they understand the investigation to be closed.

- From wire reports