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A record 0.99 percent of US home loans were entering the foreclosure process in the first three months of 2008, the Mortgage Bankers Association said Thursday. The rate of failing loans was led by a growing wave of subprime borrowers.

Following similar cuts by United Airlines, Continental Airlines said Thursday it will trim 3,000 jobs, or 6.5 percent of its workforce, in an effort to counteract record fuel costs. The Houston-based carrier also will reduce flight capacity by 11 percent.

The presidential campaigns of John McCain and Barack Obama said they've begun negotiations to hold 10 town hall-style debates suggested by McCain, who held 101 town hall meetings in New Hampshire in winning the state's GOP primary. Meanwhile, Obama instructed the Democratic National Committee Thursday to adopt his policy against accepting donations from federal lobbyists and political action committees.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) of California issued the first statewide drought declaration since 1991 and ordered water transfers to the driest areas. He also warned residents and water managers Wednesday that two years of below-average rain and snow should compel them to cut their water use.

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