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US sales of existing homes dropped 3.1 percent in October, while median home prices continued to plummet and have now declined 11.3 percent since a year ago to $183,300, the National Association of Realtors reported Monday. The latter slide was the steepest since the association began keeping records in 1968.

The government plowed a fresh $20 billion into Citigroup Sunday, hoping that the capital infusion will save the once-mighty bank. Citigroup earlier received $25 billion from the $700 billion federal bailout package. In a joint statement, the Treasury Department, the Federal Reserve, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Co. said the action was "necessary to strengthen the financial system and protect US taxpayers and the US economy."

The price of a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline fell 33 cents to a national average of $1.97 during the past two weeks, according to the latest Lundberg Survey. The last time gas dipped below $2 a gallon was March 2005.

To cut down on the expense of transporting high-security inmates to courtroom appearances, Connecticut and some 10 other states have gone to teleconferencing, at least for initial arraignments, according to the Associated Press. The equipment can save as much as $1,600 per court visit.


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