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General Motors Corp. will reduce its salaried workforce worldwide from 73,000 to 63,000 this year, with 3,400 of the 10,000 cuts coming in the US, the company said Tuesday. The layoffs, plus plans to trim US salaries by 10 percent, are part of a restructuring strategy the automaker must submit to the government by Feb. 17 in order to secure a $9.4 billion, low-interest loan.

As part of a tentative order to lessen California's overcrowded prisons, a three-judge special panel proposed reducing the current prison population of about 158,000 by as many as 55,000 within three years. State officials said they would appeal any final release order to the US Supreme Court.

Wholesale inventories fell 1.4 percent in December, their largest drop-off in 16 years, the Commerce Department reported Tuesday.

Virginia's House of Delegates passed restrictions Monday on smoking in public places. Although the bill incorporates various compromises, proponents view it as a turning point in a state with the world's largest cigarette factory.


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