Today in the Fortune 500: Google calls Microsoft Bing a copycat, BP’s Russian deal gets chilled and Pfizer cuts drug research.

February 2, 2011, 4:36 PM UTC
Bing Homepage in August 2010
Image via Wikipedia

The Fortune 500 comes out just once a year, but the companies on it make headlines every day. Here then are today’s highlights of news and happenings coming from the biggest names in business.

By Shelley DuBois, reporter

GOOGLE TO MICROSOFT: “GET YOUR OWN ALGORITHM” Google (GOOG) is up in arms because it says that Microsoft’s (MSFT) search engine Bing is copying Google’s search results. Bing denies it, but Google got in a pretty good jab in an e-mailed statement from Google Fellow Amit Singhal, claiming the company is happy to compete with innovative search algorithms, not recycled ones. [Bloomberg Businessweek]

BUMMER IN RUSSIA for BP, which was gunning to pay its shareholders its first dividend since the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Things were looking up for BP (BP) because of  a promising new partnership with Russian oil company Rosneft, but then a London judge ruled that the deal breached an agreement with another shareholder. [Financial Times]

HANDS OFF Citigroup seized full control of UK music company EMI, which handles big famous acts such as Coldplay and the Beatles. Citi’s (C) takeover ends a tense agreement between it and private equity firm Terra Firma, which, led by British financier Guy Hands, had bought EMI with a borrowed $8.4 billion. Citi was able to write off about $3.5 billion of EMI’s debt with its acquisition, but will soon likely look for new buyers. [New York Times]

MIND THE GAP again, the company hopes. It’s supposed to announce Wednesday that 54-year-old Art Peck, who previously oversaw the company’s outlet division as well as its corporate strategy will move up to lead Gap’s (GPS) entire North America division. Gap could use some new and better branding, especially after receiving such heated backlash for the logo change the company tried out earlier this year. [Wall Street Journal]

PFIZER CUTS NEW DRUG RESEARCH from its portfolio, as the company prepares to buy back billions of dollars worth of its stock. Pfizer’s (PFE) research and development efforts haven’t generated the slew of new drugs that the company wanted to have ready to compete with cheaper generics. The company’s shift away from research and development represents “a fundamental change in culture,” says Pfizer CEO Ian Read. [Wall Street Journal]

IF YOU LIKE ARTSY PICTURES OF OLD COMPUTERS then you’ll love this video that IBM (IBM) made for its 100th anniversary. A brief journey back in time through all of the machines and other contributions from the great tech goliath. [All Things Digital]