Wholesalers reduced their inventories 1.1 percent in October, the biggest drop since the period after the 2001 terrorist attacks, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. The decline far exceeded the 0.2 percent dip economists had predicted.

The Environmental Protection Agency unveiled its version of the FBI's most-wanted list Wednesday, with 23 fugitives listed for having committed crimes such as illegal dumping. If caught, they could face huge fines and jail time.

Congressional lawmakers grilled former executives of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Tuesday and expressed frustration at what they called a lack of willingness to share any of the blame for dragging the country into a recession. The government has seized control of both mortgage giants.

Bank of America reversed course and came to the aid of a Chicago factory Tuesday that is dealing with a sit-in by laid-off workers. The dispute at Republic Windows and Doors has received national attention as a poster child for tensions in the distressed economy. Angered Republic workers have vowed to stay put until their severance pay demands are met, but Bank of America yanked the plant's financing last week, complicating a resolution.

Unemployment increased in 71 percent of US cities with at least 20,000 residents between 2000 and 2007, according to the latest Census Bureau data. The city with the highest unemployment by 2007: Muskegon, Mich. (22.1 percent).

The percentage of companies with women on their boards (15.1) and the percentage of corporate officer positions held by women (15.7) rose only slightly in 2008, according to new data from Catalyst, a nonprofit that promotes business opportunities for women.

Forecasters at Colorado State predict seven hurricanes in the Atlantic next year, with one major hurricane making landfall in the US.

Actress Bea Arthur (above) and the late talk show host and producer Merv Griffin were inducted Tuesday into the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Hall of Fame in Beverly Hills, Calif. Arthur's sitcom stardom came in "Maude" in the 1970s and in "The Golden Girls," which aired from 1985 to 1992.

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