Religious broadcaster Pat Robertson Wednesday dropped his month-old offer to purchase financially troubled United Press International in its entirety, declaring that "economics just don't . . . seem to make sense."

At a news conference in Washington, Robertson said he was instructing his attorneys to "modify our offer," initially set at $6 million. He said he was still interested in "acquiring but one or two of the assets of this organization, including its name."Robertson said he was interested in purchasing UPI's radio operations.

UPI is operating under bankruptcy protection for the second time in recent years. UPI President Pieter VanBennekom, speaking immediately after Robertson, said the search would resume for another buyer. At the same time, he said the company, which employs 500 people, would consider all its options, "including a shutdown of operations."

He made his comment at a crowded news conference at the National Press Club. Among the

reporters present was one for UPI.

The wire service has been losing money for three decades and now owes its creditors $60 million.

In New York, Wire Service Guild President Kevin Keane, representing one of UPI's largest creditors, said he was not surprised by Robertson's announcement but made no additional comment.

Robertson emerged at a federal bankruptcy hearing in Vermont last month as the only bidder for all of UPI, a company with a long and proud tradition as a wire service providing newspaper stories, news photographs and broadcasting services. He was granted 30 days to go over UPI's finances before deciding whether to go forward with his offer.

Robertson's announcement marked another turn in the long, downward economic spiral for UPI, which has won nine Pulitzer prizes for reporting and photography.