The Letterman puzzle

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CBS executives say they're puzzled by the timing of David Letterman's pronouncement that he will likely retire from late-night TV when his contract for "Late Show With David Letterman" is up at the end of the century. New York tabloids on Thursday reported that Mr. Letterman told them he would pack it in at the end of his current CBS contract. CBS insiders observed that Mr. Letterman may simply have been looking to generate some attention, because his show has fallen off in ratings recently and he is poised to do a week's telecast from Los Angeles featuring top guests as part of the show's November ratings sweeps push.

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