Forecasters predicted that hurricane Ivan could come ashore along the Gulf Coast as early as Thursday morning, possibly bringing with it winds of 160 m.p.h. and a storm surge of up to 16 feet. Although meteorologists could not predict accurately where it might hit, more than 1 million people in metropolitan New Orleans, which is below sea level, were warned to seek higher ground inland - as far away as Houston, if necessary. Almost as many people in Florida, Mississippi, and Alabama also were told to evacuate. Meanwhile, tropical storm Jeanne was closing in on Puerto Rico and could be near Florida's east coast as early as the weekend.

President Bush heads to Minnesota Thursday, one of 10 states where he and Democratic rival John Kerry are targeting for campaign visits and advertising dollars. The others: Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Wisconsin, Iowa, Nevada, New Mexico, West Virginia, and New Hampshire. In Detroit Wednesday, Kerry attacked Bush for creating "more excuses than jobs," while laying out his own economic vision.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. announced it will rehire 4,000 employees whose jobs it had outsourced to IBM, ending an agreement hailed as "the largest of its kind" less than two years ago. A spokesman said the deal was curtailed because a merger with Bank One in January gives JPMorgan more of its own technologial capability.

On the last big day of primaries before the Nov. 2 election, voters in Washington State chose Attorney General Christine Gregoire (D) and former state Sen. Dino Rossi (R) to vie for the governorship, which two-term Democratic incumbent Gary Locke is relinquishing. In the Northeast, five-term Democratic US Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont and Sen. Judd Gregg of New Hampshire won renomination. Gregg, a Republican, is in his second term.

Federal advisers who heard testimony earlier this week about treating children with antidepressants said Tuesday the drugs should carry a "black box" warning that their use is linked to increased suicidal thoughts and actions, and most have not been effective. The panel recommended that the Food and Drug Administration mandate a black border - not just bold letters as previously suggested - as a warning to physicians prescribing the medication.

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