ECONOMY Money market fund assets

fell $5.9 billion to $422.0 billion in the week ended Wednesday, the Investment Company Institute said.

COMPANIES AT&T

asked a federal court in Dayton, Ohio, to invalidate "poison pill" and other anti-takeover defenses raised by computer maker NCR Corp., which AT&T wants to buy. NCR called AT&T's suit "frivolous."

Ford

said it will idle about 26,800 U.S. and Canadian workers at a dozen vehicle assembly plants during January because of a shortage of orders.

Beech-Nut

plans to introduce a broad line of organic infant foods.

USF&G

of Baltimore and Fireman's Fund Insurance of San Francisco agreed to pay Texas $750,000 each and testify in an antitrust lawsuit against some of the nation's largest insurers. The state had accused eight insurance firms and other insurance groups in 1988 of conspiring to drive up rates and cut back coverage.

Arco Chemical

agreed to pay a record $3.48 million in penalties for safety violations found after a July 1990 Houston-area plant explosion killed 17 workers.

State Farm Insurance

has agreed to pay $12 million to former employees and job applicants in its South Texas region who may have been discriminated against because of their race or sex. State Farm, in advertisements in several Texas newspapers, is seeking blacks, Hispanics and women who were discriminated against by the company from 1975 through 1983, the Austin American-Statesman reported.

A Boeing official

said the Air Force has opted to freeze this year's production of the B-2 Stealth bomber at 15 planes, but the Air Force said no decision has been made. INTERNATIONAL Group of Seven

members are planning their first meeting of 1991 later this month to talk about bringing the Soviet Union closer to the Western world's economy, diplomats said. The meeting is expected to be held in New York.

Inflation in Argentina

last year ran at a rate of 1,344.9 percent, a reduction from the 4,923.3 percent rate recorded for the year 1989, the government said. EARNINGS CalFed,

parent of the nation's fourth-largest thrift, said it will report a $140 million fourth-quarter loss and a year-end loss of about $270 million because the deteriorating real estate market is forcing it to boost reserves by $200 million. In 1989, it posted earnings of $82.4 million. PEOPLE Paul Bilzerian's

1989 conviction on securities and tax fraud charges was upheld by a federal appeals court. The takeover investor's sentence of four years in prison and a $1.5 million fine was one of the toughest handed out in the Wall Street insider trading scandal.

Michael Milken's

$400 million fine, plus more than $200 million to be paid by Drexel Burnham Lambert and Milken's codefendants, will be invested in U.S. Treasury securities, the U.S. district clerk in Houston announced. In a unique arrangement, the money will move directly from the Federal Reserve to the Treasury, bypassing the private banking system.

Robert Rieland

resigned as president and chief executive of the Richmond-based Thalhimer department store chain, which has been purchased by May Co. He is the fourth top officer to leave the company since the May Co. deal. REGULATION JHM Mortgage Securities,

a NYSE-listed limited partnership made up of mortgage-backed securities and other instruments, received approval from the Office of Thrift Supervision for savings associations to invest in it. JHM, based in McLean, is an affiliate of John Hancock Mutual Life Insurance. CONTRACTS Sverdrup Technology

received a $182.2 million Air Force contract for development and acquisition of conventional munitions.

McDonnell Douglas

received $82.7 million in Army contracts for helicopter electronics and light helicopter development. ODD LOTS The New York City Tribune, founded by the Rev. Sun Myung Moon in 1976, will suspend publication today for the second time in its history.