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Business Highlights

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Cast out of Monopoly, the clothes iron endures

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) â¿¿ When online voters nixed the clothes iron token from Hasbro's Monopoly game, the appliance was held up as passe, as something your grandmother once used to ease the wrinkles out of linens and handkerchiefs.

"Despite being an integral part of life when the token was added to the game in the 1930s, the iron has fallen out of favor with today's fans," the Rhode Island-based company said in announcing its replacement â¿¿ with a cat.

But even with the rise of wrinkle-free fabrics, the iron, it seems, is holding its own.

While U.S. iron sales declined in volume 1 percent last year, they were up nearly 3 percent overall from 2007 to 2012, according to the market research group Euromonitor International. Over the same period, steam generator irons â¿¿ which make more steam than traditional ones, speeding up the process â¿¿ experienced what the firm called "enormous growth." Sales were $368 million last year.

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US wholesale stockpiles dip 0.1 percent in December

WASHINGTON (AP) â¿¿ U.S. wholesalers cut their stockpiles slightly in December while their sales were unchanged, suggesting businesses were cautious at the end of a weak quarter.

The Commerce Department said Friday that wholesale business stockpiles dipped 0.1 percent in December from November to $497.7 billion. That followed a 0.4 percent rise the previous month.

Inventories of furniture and automotive goods fell by the most in more than three years. Farm product stockpiles also dropped sharply, likely reflecting the impact of this summer's drought in the Midwest.

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Boeing warns that 787 deliveries could slip

Boeing acknowledged on Friday that it may not be able to deliver its 787 as fast as hoped.

The company said it has told customers expecting the next 787 deliveries that those planes have either been delayed, or at risk for a delay.

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