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Local Tech Wire

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. – Two reports issued Tuesday keep (NYSE: IBM) at the top of the list in new patents.

According to Thomson Reuters, IBM toppled Samsung as the patent leader for 2009, 4,843 to 4,049. In 2008, the Thomson Reuters intellectual property unit said Samsung was the leader with 4,244 patents to 4,177 for IBM.

A report published by IBM on its Web site offered different numbers.

IFI Patent Intelligence listed IBM as first with 4,914 followed by Samsung at 3,611. According to IBM, it has led in patents for 17 consecutive years.

Ranking third in the Thomson Reuters report was Microsoft at 3,157.

The IFI report said Microsoft had 2,906 patents.

IBM employs about 10,000 people at its campus in RTP.