Published: Dec 17, 2013 3:51 PM EST

NEW YORK (AP) - Financial services firm Cantor Fitzgerald, which lost 658 of its 1,000 employees in the Sept. 11 attacks, has revealed a $135 million settlement with American Airlines and insurance carriers, bringing to an end a major piece of litigation resulting from the attacks.
    
The deal was announced Tuesday in federal court in Manhattan by Cantor Fitzgerald attorney John Stoviak.
    
The settlement still must be approved by federal Judge Alvin Hellerstein. The judge is praising lawyers for reaching the deal, saying he once thought it was impossible.
    
The judge says the settlement brings a "significant conclusion" to claims brought against airlines by direct victims of the attacks. And he says many of the questions that might have been answered at a trial will remain a mystery.

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