<i> Times Staff and Wire Reports</i>

Rorer Raises Fisons Bid: The French-U.S. drug manufacturer Rhone-Poulenc Rorer Inc. raised its hostile bid for Fisons to $2.9 billion, but the British maker of asthma treatments and other medicines swiftly rejected the new offer. “This is certainly a full price for Fisons,” Rorer Chairman Robert Cawthorn said. He said shareholders now have to choose between “this very handsome price for this company” or stick with Fisons as an independent entity. The new bid, which Rorer indicated would be its last, values Fisons at $2.9 billion, up from its original bid of about $2.6 billion made in August. U.S.-based Rhone-Poulenc Rorer is 68% owned by the French chemical giant Rhone-Poulenc.