Stories for May 2004

Monday, May 31

Relying on Invalidated Report, Port Moves Forward on Lease

Despite pending reforms and a pledge to adopt more transparent leasing policies, officials at the Port of Los Angeles are moving ahead with a lease renewal and expansion that appears to skirt environmental laws

Hotels Withdraw From Contract Negotiations With Union

A consortium of L.A.'s largest hotels, claiming that union negotiators are intentionally stalling contract talks, has moved to terminate the extension of an existing contract, effective June 2.

Convention Hotel Financing Plan Gels

The long-stalled convention center hotel project appears to be reviving and could be headed towards consideration by the Los Angeles City Council.

THE LABJ STOCK INDEX

Tracking 200 selected Los Angeles County-based companies; Market Diary, Market indexes, Industry analysis, 52-week performance, weekly top Gainers & Losers, Market summary, weekly profile

BANKRUPTCIES

Weekly List of recent L.A. bankruptcies

Investors See Cup Half Empty Despite Progress at Farmer Bros.

WALL STREET WEST

Employment in Valley To Lead L.A. County, According to Forecast

Job growth in the San Fernando Valley economy will lead L.A. County in 2004, continuing a trend that began last year, according to an economic forecast by California State University, Northridge.

Review & Preview

Review of this week's other top news; Preview of upcoming stories and events.

Officials Pushing for Waiver Cutting Requirement for Ethanol in Gasoline

A battle is under way between scientists at the federal Environmental Protection Agency and state officials and environmentalists.

THE LIST - Retail Centers

The L.A. Business Journal's list of top 25 Retail Centers In L.A. County; ranked by gross leasable area

LABJ FORUM - Vacation Days

The Business Journal asks: What are your Memorial Day vacation plans?

CALENDAR

Calendar of L.A. business events, conventions, and announcements

Scaled Back Airport Plan Draws Hint Of Support

The contesting factions that have all but shelved L.A. Mayor James Hahn's $9 billion proposal to modernize Los Angeles International Airport are cautiously supporting a scaled-back plan

LABJ's LA Stories / The Roving Eye

Weekly Columns; More news and talk from around the town, behind the scenes.

ECONOWATCH L.A. COUNTY

Charts of Economic Indicators, Real Estate, Tourism...

KCET Lines Up Cigarette Tax Funding for New Show

KCET, the LA public station that has struggled in recent years, has received commitments for millions of dollars to back a new bilingual broadcast bringing childhood development advice to home caregivers.

Monday, May 24

Consultant to Port Emerges As Key Figure In City Probe

A Shanghai-based marketing consultant for the Port of Los Angeles who is drawing attention from investigators probing the city's contracting practices has had close ties to the Hahn administration and a track record of bypassing port staff members to deal

BANKRUPTCIES

Weekly List of recent L.A. bankruptcies

THE LIST - Charitable Foundations/Trusts L.A. County based

The L.A. Business Journal's list of top 25 Charitable Foundations/Trusts L.A. County based; ranked by total assets in 2003

LABJ FORUM - Life of Luxury

The Business Journal asks: If you had $500 million, what would you do with it?

THE LABJ STOCK INDEX

Tracking 200 selected Los Angeles County-based companies; Market Diary, Market indexes, Industry analysis, 52-week performance, weekly top Gainers & Losers, Market summary, weekly profile

Local Officials See Bright Side Of Budget Diversion Proposal

While local cities and agencies must make deeper budget cuts this year than expected, thanks to a far-reaching deal with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, the prospect of those cuts being restored in two years has minimized the grumbling.

Lease Deal Has SBC Moving to Transamerica Center

SBC Communications Inc. has signed one of the biggest leases of the year in downtown L.A., a $50 million deal for 225,000 square feet at the Transamerica Center.

Universal Goes Back to School In Effort to Stem File Swapping

Universal Studios and Universal Music Group are trying to give universities an extra shove in cracking down on illegal file swappers by promoting a technology they say will make it easier for colleges to track down violators.

Street Comes Back to Life With New Shops Surrounding Macy's

Spotlight on South Lake Avenue - When it opened in 1947, the Bullock's in Pasadena was dubbed the "store of tomorrow" and it inspired a surge of retail development on South Lake Avenue.

Rollercoaster Drop Hits Entertainment Sector Investments

When Wall Street sneezes, big media always seems to catch cold. Year to date, the Bloomberg Media Index of 33 U.S. companies is down 9.7 percent, compared with the S & P; 500 being down 2.1 percent.

L.A.'s 50 Richest

Sumner Redstone tops the list of wealthiest Angelenos. Many billionaires increased their worth, but there were some losses, too.

L.A.'s Richest Zip Codes

No. 3

LABJ's LA Stories / The Roving Eye

Weekly Columns; More news and talk from around the town, behind the scenes.

With Profits, Internet Ventures Get Set for Revival of IPOs

Google Inc. grabbed the headlines when it filed for its $2.7 billion initial public offering last month, but the wider hunger for Internet and technology stocks has investors in local dot-com survivors starting to think about exit strategies.

Review & Preview

Review of this week's other top news; Preview of upcoming stories and events.

Real Estate Buyer Vows to Keep Earl Scheib in the Paint Business

WALL STREET WEST - Is the end near for Earl Scheib Inc.?

ECONOWATCH L.A. COUNTY

Charts of Economic Indicators, Real Estate, Tourism...

CALENDAR

Calendar of L.A. business events, conventions, and announcements

Monday, May 17

Quirk Has Stamps.com Asking Investors Not to Buy Its Shares

WALL STREET WEST

THE LIST - Business Improvement Districts

The L.A. Business Journal's list of top 25 Business improvement districts, ranked by 2003 budget

Gas Prices on the Rise in Time for Summer Vacation

Motorists still plan to drive on their summer vacations, even though the average cost of gasoline could hit the $2.50-per-gallon mark during the July and August peak user months.

ECONOWATCH L.A. COUNTY

Charts of Economic Indicators, Real Estate, Tourism...

NEWSMAKERS

Moving From Feeding the Masses to Storing Their Stuff

CALENDAR

Calendar of L.A. business events, conventions, and announcements

No Reason Given In Termination of Maguire Official

Tony Morales, the top leasing official at Maguire Properties, has been abruptly fired with no explanation.

Review & Preview

Review of this week's other top news; Preview of upcoming stories and events.

THE LABJ STOCK INDEX

Tracking 200 selected Los Angeles County-based companies; Market Diary, Market indexes, Industry analysis, 52-week performance, weekly top Gainers & Losers, Market summary, weekly profile

BANKRUPTCIES

Weekly List of recent L.A. bankruptcies

LABJ FORUM - Blame Game

The Business Journal asks: Who's to blame for the exorbitant gas prices?

LABJ's LA Stories / The Roving Eye

Weekly Columns; More news and talk from around the town, behind the scenes.

Audit Shows Flaws in Anti-Fraud Program

California employers are not getting their money's worth when they plunk down $30 million in insurance premiums each year to fight workers' compensation fraud, a new state audit concludes.

Monday, May 10

National Lampoon Looking to Build Beyond "Animal House"

CORPORATE FOCUS

ECONOWATCH L.A. COUNTY

Charts of Economic Indicators, Real Estate, Tourism...

Hotels Want Workers to Share Health Insurance Cost

L.A.'s 17 largest hotels, emboldened by the success of the region's three largest supermarket chains' in gaining health care concessions from its workers, now want their 4,000 employees to follow suit.

PC Mall Unit ECost Plans IPO That Would Raise $35 Million

PC Mall Unit ECost Plans IPO That Would Raise $35 Million

Review & Preview

Review of this week's other top news; Preview of upcoming stories and events.

KPMG Pulls Out of Running To Advise Contracting Panel

L.A. Mayor James Hahn's effort to establish consistent, improved contracting procedures at the city's three revenue-generating departments has been delayed at least a month

FUN FACTS

FUN FACTS

THE LIST - HOTELS

The L.A. Business Journal's list of top 50 Hotels, ranked by the number of guest rooms

Conservative Investment Strategy Yields Modest Returns

Conservative Investment Strategy Yields Modest Returns

LABJ's LA Stories / The Roving Eye

Weekly Columns; More news and talk from around the town, behind the scenes.

LABJ FORUM - Second Thoughts

The Business Journal asks: In retrospect, do you think the war in Iraq was the right thing to do or the wrong thing to do?

CALENDAR

Calendar of L.A. business events, conventions, and announcements

THE LABJ STOCK INDEX

Tracking 200 selected Los Angeles County-based companies; Market Diary, Market indexes, Industry analysis, 52-week performance, weekly top Gainers & Losers, Market summary, weekly profile

BANKRUPTCIES

Weekly List of recent L.A. bankruptcies

CALPERS - The Portfolio

Investment by Asset Class; Breakdown of Portfolio; Top 20 Company Exposures; Largest Bond Holdings; Largest Investments

Fund's Leading Figures Include Ph.D., Glazier, Labor Advocate

Fund's Leading Figures Include Ph.D., Glazier, Labor Advocate

Circulation Results Highlight Challenges

Daily newspaper circulation across Los Angeles County was mixed for the six months ended March 31, as improvements in the economy were offset by several circulation challenges.

Battle for Better Corporate Governance Earns Cheers for Fund

Battle for Better Corporate Governance Earns Cheers for Fund

Subtle Changes Will Continue to Characterize Redesign of Times

LA TIMES The newspaper's redesign efforts will continue with subtle changes

Officials Seeking Compromises on Airport Overhaul

Several factions are seeking compromises in the plans for an overhaul of Los Angeles International Airport.

Monday, May 3

More Than Distance Isolated Counsel From Departments

Over the past decade, Los Angeles city attorneys have become increasingly removed from day-to-day contracting operations of the city's three revenue-generating departments

THE LABJ STOCK INDEX

Tracking 200 selected Los Angeles County-based companies; Market Diary, Market indexes, Industry analysis, 52-week performance, weekly top Gainers & Losers, Market summary, weekly profile

THE LIST - MBA Programs

The L.A. Business Journal's list of top 15 MBA Programs, ranked by full-time equivalent students at L.A. County campuses

Rising Rates Deflate REITs but Analysts See Sale-Level Prices

WALL STREET WEST - Real estate investment trusts, popular for providing relatively steady returns while interest rates were low, have been hit hard in the past month

Halting of P.R. Contracts Allows Many Exceptions

L.A. Mayor James Hahn's recent directive that key departments review and cancel outside public relations work does not include certain key P.R. functions that will require the city to continue contracting out work.

Review & Preview

Review of this week's other top news; Preview of upcoming stories and events.

Prosecutors Target "Mills" in Workers' Comp Crackdown

County prosecutors are going after networks of doctors and lawyers widely believed to generate a major portion of bogus workers' comp claims.

LABJ FORUM - The Morning Routine

The Business Journal asks: What are the rituals you absolutely must do before leaving the house in the morning?

KPMG Choice for Contracting Panel Raises Conflict Questions

LA City Controller Laura Chick has asked whether a pending contract with KPMG LLP for advisory services to Mayor Hahn's Blue Ribbon Commission opens the firm to charges of conflicts of interest.

ECONOWATCH L.A. COUNTY

Charts of Economic Indicators, Real Estate, Tourism...

Economic Impact of Rate Hike Would Spread Across Sector

Sweeping changes are in store as the era of bargain-basement interest rates comes to an end.

BANKRUPTCIES

Weekly List of recent L.A. bankruptcies

CALENDAR

Calendar of L.A. business events, conventions, and announcements

China Shipping Seeks Added Damages in Port Battle

China Shipping Holding Co., designated to operate a terminal delayed by a landmark environmental lawsuit at the Port of Los Angeles, is placing pressure on the city to pony up $42 million before it opens.

Pawel Ponders Future at L.A. Times

Expect at least a few more changes in the newsroom of the Los Angeles Times.

Thrill Ride?

NBC to Take Control of Universal as Revenues Freefall at Theme Parks

LABJ's LA Stories / The Roving Eye

Weekly Columns; More news and talk from around the town, behind the scenes.