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About 500 jobs will be cut at managed-care giant Humana Inc., the Louisville, Ky.-based company announced. The layoffs represent 3 percent of Humana's national workforce. A spokesman cited planned reductions in the company's noncore markets and products with little prospect for growth as reasons for the cuts. Humana also announced last June that it would pull out of 45 high-cost Medicare counties by Jan. 1, affecting about 80,000 members. Overall, the spokesman said, its health-plan membership has dropped from 5.9 million to 5.4 million in 15 states.

Citigroup Inc., the world's largest issuer of credit cards, is the most likely of four US suitors to acquire a subsidiary of deeply indebted Japanese supermarket chain Mycal Corp., a leading Tokyo newspaper reported. Nihon Keizai Shimbun said Citigroup would pay $1.7 billion for Mycal Card Inc., which offers a range of credit and leasing services through its parent company's stores. By purchasing Mycal Card, whose more than 5 million clients are mostly in the middle-income bracket, Citigroup would broaden its base in Japan, the newspaper said.

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