Stories for July 2006

Monday, July 31

Dow Ends Down 34, Nasdaq Down 3

Wall Street withstood a spate of profit-taking Monday, with stocks suffering only modest losses as investors locked in gains from last week's rally. The major indexes finished July mixed.

The Set's Sailing

Developers have shanghaied a Rancho Palos Verdes site that was the location for two "Pirates of the Caribbean" movies and other big-budget sea films.

A Pricey Rite of Passage

As an economic reality, the market for quincea & #324;eras parties for Latina teens has reached critical mass.

City Light

Carol Schatz has led the Central City Association through the historic revitalization of downtown. Still, challenges lie ahead.

Container Tax Is the Wrong Way to Fund Infrastructure

The need to invest in California's infrastructure is readily apparent to anyone who drives on the state's roads and highways.

Leaky Pipes Are Clear and Present Danger to the Environment

Some popular beaches in Southern California are polluted with sewage as often as one out of every three days.

Wild Ride

This year's Tour de France gave Computer Sciences Corp. all the glamour, drama and scandal any team's corporate sponsor could imagine.

Amgen Shows Some Signs of Slipping Off the Cutting Edge

Amgen Inc.

Univision Sale Pushes Total Value of June Deals Over $20 Billion

A whopping total of $20.6 billion changed hands in June for companies that were bought or sold in Los Angeles County.

With Attendance Over 100,000, Comic-Con's Not Just for Geeks

It has become a rite of summer for Hollywood's sci-fi and fantasy crowd to make an annual pilgrimage down the freeway to San Diego and camp on the exhibit floor of Comic-Con International.

Toga Turnaround?

It's no laughing matter for the new president of National Lampoon, whose company's stock is down 67 percent in a year. His plan is to capture the college market via new digital platforms

Dot.com Jobs Bubbling Over In L.A. County

Technology and Internet jobs are rebounding with a vengeance in Southern California following a four-year downturn.

Latest Installment of Blockbuster Franchise Closer to Green Light

The USOC narrowed to three the field of American cities that it would consider backing in a bid for the Summer Olympics in 2016, and our city, San Francisco and Chicago remain in the running.

Maverick Angels Say That Money's Not the Motivation

Maverick Angels is a different kind of investor group that claims to boast "an entrepreneurial approach to angel investing."

Healthcare Roundup

Diagnostic Products Acquisition Completed; Staar Enters China; Amgen Signs Licensing Agreement; CytRx Reports Vaccine Progress

Comcast, Turner Back Revver

Los Angeles-based online video content service Revver has picked up Comcast Interactive Capital and Turner Broadcasting as backers.

Ballet Tries to Leap Onto Stage in Time for 'Nutcracker'

The nascent Los Angeles Ballet faces its first challenge: finding a home in time to stage the holiday money-maker "The Nutcracker."

Regional Report

Regional news from L.A. County companies.

Greenhouse Gas Bill Noxious to Business

Business groups and local companies are lining up to oppose proposed state legislation that would cap greenhouse gas emissions.

Activision Involved in Another Options Suit

Santa Monica-based video game publisher Activision Inc., its board members and executives were targeted in a shareholder lawsuit accusing it of improperly enhancing and reporting executives' stock options.

Storm Brewing Over Efforts to Limit Runoff Pollution

Regulations may be coming for storm water discharges from all construction and industrial sites in the state.

Clay Day

One architect's passion for natural building materials prompted him to start a company that builds with such materials as limestone and clay.

Going Nuclear

Lately support for nuclear power seems to have turned around, and a few proposals have popped up to build what would be the first new nuclear power plants in decades.

Headlines From Monday's Papers

Northrop Division, Wyle Laboratories Are Up for Auction; Exit Plan: Follow Nissan; ICM Changing Channels; Tom Cruise's Studio Pact Is in Question; McDonald's, Mattel Dispute Allegations About Chinese Plant ...

Schwarzenegger; Blair Join Forces Against Global Warming

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and British Prime Minister Tony Blair on Monday signed an agreement to exchange information on market-based methods for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and boost basic research into clean energy technologies.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

New L.A. Marathon Route Announced; Qualstar chief financial officer resigns; Kilroy Inks New Office Space Deal; Hi-Shear, Ducommun and Broadway Financial earnings.

Gas Prices Drop Again, Barely

The average price of a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline in the Los Angeles Area was $3.24 for the week ended July 31, down 3 cents from the previous week.

Century Park Revs Up

Century Park Capital Partners, a Los Angeles-based private equity firm, bought a slice of Americana Thursday by acquiring Eckler Enterprises Inc., a supplier of auto parts for classic Corvettes, Chevys and Camaros.

Attorney's Latest Victory Even Bigger Than Sempra Case

Albro Lundy III has already had a big year. In January, he beat Sempra Energy. By May, he was tackling a brain tumor. He finished radiation treatment earlier this month

Beach Bummer

The merchants of Venice Beach say sales are off. Other beach destinations may be drawing more visitors.

Input Sought on Rose Bowl Plans For Renovation

Rose Bowl officials are seeking the input of the business community as they plan for a major renovation.

Mattel Makes Several Strides in Its Post-Barbie Strategy

El Segundo-based Mattel Inc. took two major steps last week in its campaign to find new life and new revenue streams without its iconic but so-yesterday blonde.

Columbia Square Sale Continuing Hollywood Renaissance

Sunset Boulevard's Columbia Square may soon become an even tonier Hollywood address.

Several Regional Spots Top List of Priciest ZIP Codes

Many Southern California ZIP codes, including Santa Monica, show up on a survey of the most expensive home prices in the United States.

Profit-Taking Pushes Stocks Lower

Stocks fell Monday as investors sought to lock in gains from last week's rally. A handful of disappointing earnings and higher oil prices also pressured the markets.

Journey Ends With Worker Stock Plan

One small-business owner's search for a succession plan led him to an employee stock ownership plan.

Voters to Decide on Mayor's Billion-Dollar Housing Bond

L.A. business groups are backing Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's $1 billion housing bond on the November ballot.

Friday, July 28

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Wilshire Bancorp Reports Record Profits; ePoint Gets U.K. Contract; K-Swiss Earning Up; Health Care Properties Declares Dividend; Youbet Lands New Credit Facility ...

Dow Closes Up 119 on GDP News

A sharp slowdown in economic growth propelled stocks higher Friday as the government's latest gross domestic product reading fed hopes for an end to interest rates hikes.

Headlines From Friday's Papers

Support is Slipping For Big Bond Package; Santa Monica Plans Smoking Ban on Promenade; Hollywood Agency ICM Acquires Small Rival; Developer Buys Site For $9.5 Million ...

Homebuilder's 2Q Net Slips

Standard Pacific Corp. reported tepid second-quarter earnings along with Ryland and KB Home, indicating that huge gains by homebuilders in quarters past may be slowing down.

Raytheon Might Shed Aircraft Unit

Raytheon Co. is considering selling or spinning off its largest non-defense business, Raytheon Aircraft Co.

Thursday, July 27

Global Crossing Lawsuit Settled

More than two dozen investment banks including Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc. have agreed to pay $99 million to settle a class-action lawsuit that accused Global Crossing Ltd. and its bankers of falsifying financial records to hide

New Home Sales Fall; Factory Orders Up

Sales of new homes fell in June by the largest amount in four months while the inventory of unsold homes climbed to a record high, providing further evidence that the once-booming housing sector is slowing.

Pay Raises Struggle to Outpace Inflation

The bad news: this year will be another year of modest pay increases. The worse news: inflation might eat up those gains.

Northrop, Richard Ellis See Rise in Profits

UAVs and Ships Help Northrop Profit Rise 17 percent while European, and Asian Operations Bolster CB Richard Ellis' second-quarter earnings.

Headlines From Thursday's Papers

A New 200-Room Hotel in the Works for Redondo Beach?; L.A. Area Leads in Employers That Aren't; Foreclosure Activity Takes Off; Cities Awaiting Edison Signal on Wireless Networks ...

Ralph's Pleads Guilty to Illegal Hiring

Ralphs Grocery Co. pleaded guilty in federal court to several charges stemming from the grocery retailer's illegal hiring of hundreds of workers under fake names during a strike and lockout in the Southern California supermarket industry three years ago.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Avery Declares Dividend; iTunes Inks Another TV Deal, Hilton Goes to Thailand; FirstFed, IHOP earnings; Avery Declares Dividend

Stocks Slip As Investors Await GDP Data

Wall Street ended mildly lower Thursday as investors took profits amid nervousness about the government's second-quarter gross domestic product report.

Wednesday, July 26

Stocks Close Marginally Lower

Stocks closed marginally lower Wednesday after a session of seesaw trading and profit-taking following a two-day rally.

Jacobs' Earnings up 38%

Jacobs Engineering Group sees profits and revenue up after solid third quarter.

Mattel Buys Radica

Mattel Inc. will purchase Radica Games Ltd., $230 million, or $11.55 a share. This is the El Segundo-based toy company's first major acquisition since the late 1990s.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Southern California Boeing Facilities Post Loss; Image Lands Deal with S'More; Tetra Tech Venture Gets 10-Year Contract; MRV Communications Cuts 2Q Loss by 36% ...

Strong State Economy Forecast

The California economy is expected to grow at a robust clip of nearly 6 percent over the next three years.

Fed Says Growth Slow, Inflation Modest

The U.S. economy continued to grow from mid-June to early July, but showed signs of slowing as consumer spending seemed to decelerate and housing markets continued cooling.

Headlines From Wednesday's Papers

Mattel, in Tech Play, to Buy Electronic Line; CalPERS Strategy Pays Off Big-Time; Plan to Let Judges Cut Damages Is Blocked; Report: Local Production Activity Slips ...

UPDATE: Housing Bill Headed For Ballot

The Los Angeles City Council has placed Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's proposed $1 billion housing bond on the already crowded Nov. 7 ballot.

Do Transformers Need Pricey Upgrades?

It's not just the historic heat wave that has blown transformers and caused hundreds of thousands of power outages across the Bay Area and California.

Tuesday, July 25

Update: State Declares Power Emergency

As the state suffered through another day in a record heat wave, energy officials on Monday afternoon declared a Stage Two power emergency.

Univision Bid is Debt-Heavy

The group attempting to buy Univision Communications Inc. plans to carry a lot of debt in its purchase of the Spanish-language network, according to a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.

Consumer Confidence Up Slightly

Consumers shrugged off higher gasoline prices in July and grew a bit more optimistic about the economy.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Warner Bros. and iTunes Team Up; Countrywide, Avery, Overhill Farms, Rotonics and Digital Insight Earnings; Reliance Declares Dividend; Credit Upgrad for Port of Long Beach ...

Atlanta Next for KB Homes, Stewart

KB Home and Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc. are entering into a partnership to build a co-branded community outside Atlanta.

Headlines From Tuesday's Papers

Revamp Helps State Cope With Energy Demand; Disney to Acquire India TV Channel Geared to Children; Univision's Buyers Arrange Financing; TV Industry Unites On Viewer Education ...

Stocks End Up on Late-Day Bounce

A late-day rebound gave stocks a moderate advance as sharply lower oil prices and an unexpected jump in consumer confidence settled unease over a batch of mixed earnings.

Sales of Existing Homes Fall in June

Sales of existing homes fell in June for the eighth time in the past 10 months while home prices edged up at the slowest pace in more than a decade.

Monday, July 24

Santa Clarita Shows Strength as Vacancy Rates Continue to Drop

Strong and getting stronger is how brokers described the North Los Angeles commercial office market at the end of the second quarter. With vacancies continuing to fall and rents on the rise, all signs pointed to a market driven by more demand than builder

Landmark Battle

Examples of L.A. landmarks, plans to transform them and efforts at preservation of the structures.

Attorneys From Quinn Emanuel to Pursue Smaller Cases

Three Quinn Emanuel Urquhart Oliver & Hedges LLP attorneys have left the firm with big plans for a small shingle. Ryan G. Baker, Jaime W. Marquart and Daryl M. Crone have left Quinn to start their own shop, Baker Marquart & Crone LLP. They will focus on

Small Businesses Get Help From Gov.

Small businesses wanting to get in on all the infrastructure work being doled out by state agencies got a boost on from an executive order issued by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Edison Seeks Long-Term Contracts

Southern California Edison is in the process of soliciting long-term power purchase contract offers by independent power producers.

Keeping an Eye On the Road

Here's a bit of irony: A state body on July 14 passed new automobile insurance regulations that are to lower insurance rates in Los Angeles and San Francisco while raising rates in rural and suburban areas.

Sporteve Playing to Demand for Women's Athletic Garb

Five years ago, D'Lynda Fischer was a full-time urban planner, more likely to be found with a cigarette than a bicycle.

Headlines From Monday's Papers

Heat Knocks Out Power to 175,000 Homes and Businesses; Retailers See Trouble on Ports' Horizon; Citizens, Developer to Discuss San Pedro Project; LAX Runway Project Lifts Off ...

South Bay Home Sales Still Strong

More South Bay homes traded hands in June than in any month since August 2005, according to a new real estate report.

Rents and Land Values Go Up as Vacancy Rates Go Down

Commercial-to-residential conversions and mixed-use projects have eaten into available office space in Hollywood in the second quarter, pushing rents and land values up and vacancy rates down.

Oil Prices Rise On Refinery Snags

Oil prices jumped to $75 a barrel on Monday following reports of several refinery snags that helped push gasoline futures higher.

Corporate Departures Push Glendale Vacancies Sky High

The Tri-Cities remained one of the tightest overall office markets in the region in the second quarter, despite a sky-high office vacancy rate in Glendale, which has seen the exodus of several major corporations.

LABJ Forum: Historical Outlook

The Business Journal asks: How important is historic preservation?

Televisa Sues Univision Over Internet Broadcast Rights

Grupo Televisa SA, the world's largest Spanish-language broadcaster, filed a lawsuit against Univision Communications Inc. in Los Angeles Superior Court for the right to distribute its programming in the United States over the Internet.

Leasing Slows Amid Concerns Over Inventory and High Rates

Talk about too much of a good thing. Steadily sinking vacancy rates and historically high rents are putting the brakes on office leasing in Century City, Santa Monica, Culver City and Brentwood.

Upgrading Buildings With an Eye on the Future and the Past

If Wayne Ratkovich and Tim Meier have nostalgia for raw land, it's because restoring historic structures can be hard work.

Increased Drug Sales Help Amgen Exceed Second Quarter Expectations

Despite charges relating to a recent acquisition, biotech giant Amgen Inc. beat Wall Street second-quarter forecasts on July 20 as it reported double digit increases in sales of its drugs to fight anemia, infection and inflammation.

Sellers Reluctant to Close Despite Market-Peak Conditions

San Fernando Valley vacancies dropped, while net absorption and Class A rents rose in the second quarter. But brokers said the real story was that many sellers were reluctant to pull the trigger at the top of the office market.

Studio's Coup Is The Reelz Deal

ReelzChannel, a cable and satellite network dedicated entirely to news and shows about movies, won't hit the airwaves until September 27.

Digital Movies Meeting Resistance

Every weekend through the summer, big-budget movies compete for dominance at the box office but on movie sets, a quieter sort of contest is taking place between digital movie cameras and traditional cameras.

Status Quo?

Historic preservation overlay zones may be generating controversy in the battle over how to preserve the integrity of older buildings, but it's hardly the first type of action taken by communities to preserve neighborhood character.

Static Grows at CalAmp Amid Aggressive Acquisition Strategy

The wires got crossed at CalAmp Inc. this month after it reported its first net loss in several years even as the company was just added to the widely watched Russell 2000 Index.

Shuttle Camera Brings Firm Into Focus

Two minutes and 47 seconds into the July 4 launch of the space shuttle Discovery, NASA engineers at Cape Kennedy realized four pieces of external foam on the fuel tank had fallen away and may have punctured the ship's heat shield tiles.

Proximity to Ports Sends Vacancy Rates Lower

Business from the county's booming ports drove industrial vacancy rates in the Mid Cities to historically low levels in the second quarter, with the shortage of space cooling real estate activity.

Looking Up

Peter Griffith was recently named vice chairman of the Pacific Southwest area for Ernst & Young, the global accounting firm with 140,000 employees.

Historically Low Vacancies Contribute to Office Squeeze

The downtown housing boom is revealing itself in the latest vacancy rates.

Until New Offices Are Built, Tenants Face a Longer Search

There's relief on the horizon, but for now companies looking for office space in Ventura County are going to have to search a little longer.

Trizec Acquisition Leads to Shifting of L.A.'s Major Assets

Musical chairs in Los Angeles' office investment market kicked up a notch in the second quarter when Trizec Properties Inc., which had just closed a deal to buy $1.63 billion worth of Southland office properties, said it was being acquired by Brookfield P

Indie Film Service Withoutabox Adds the Rights Stuff

Withoutabox.com, the Internet company that helps independent and wannabe filmmakers connect to the industry, is taking a large box approach.

Low Vacancies Make It Tough For Tenants to Find Right Space

Finding office space along the Wilshire Corridor was tough in the first half of the year. Historically low vacancy and high asking rates kept new deals to a minimum, slowing the pace of renewals and expansions.

Former Manager Hoops It Up With Licensing Venture

It seems that AJ DiScala is ready to play ball. The former husband and manager of "Sopranos" actress Jamie Lynn Sigler is now marketing himself as an investment banker and sports impresario.

L.A. Gas Prices Drop Slightly

The average price of a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline in the Los Angeles area was $3.265 for the week ended July 24, down 2 cents from the previous week.

Dow Closes Up 180, Nasdaq up 41

Wall Street rallied sharply as the multibillion-dollar buyout of HCA Inc. and upbeat earnings reports from a pair of drugmakers tempered fears of an economic slowdown.

Newsmakers & Kudos

The appointments and promotions of the movers and shakers of L.A.'s business community.

2Q Venture Capital Off, Study Finds

Venture capital investments in early-stage companies in Los Angeles fell significantly in the second quarter, down 23 percent to $245 million, a new report has found.

Cool Wheels

Thanks to the success of the Prius and other hybrid-fuel vehicles, there are more alternative cars on the road than ever. But they still represent less than 1 percent of today's traffic.

Latham Takes On Indicted Rival Milberg in Antitrust Case

When the nation's largest class-action securities law firm Milberg Weiss Bershad & Schulman LLP was indicted in May in Los Angeles for allegedly receiving kickbacks, it sent a shock wave through the legal community.

It's Time to Implement the Changes Required by Proposition 103

For more than 17 years drivers across Los Angeles have been asking the question: Didn't we make it illegal to base insurance premiums on where we live instead of how we drive?

Long Beach Newspaper Site Sold for Affordable Housing

Long Beach businessman Jim Brophy learned a lot about his city's lack of affordable workforce housing when he chaired the city's Neighborhood Development Task Force a few years ago.

Young Literati Gets Things Going for Library Branches

Many of L.A. Public Library's branches are lacking in some basics, due to limited resources and limited funding. Brian Kaufman, a partner of Westridge Capital, wanted to use his resources to help bring funding to the library system.

Playing '21'

A number of club owners say that they have changed their ways, by firing non-compliant staff and adding ID-scanning technology

Startups Could Be Match for Internet-Smitten Media Giants

Faced with threat of seeing their dominance usurped by the Internet explosion, the world's largest media firms have reacted predictably.

'En Contexto' Gives Viewers Newsier Late-Night Approach

Telemundo's Los Angeles affiliate, KVEA-TV, Channel 52, is taking an unusual approach to its 11 p.m. news slot. They've made it newsier.

Power Consumption Threatens Blackouts

California's electrical grid perched on a razor's edge today as people returned to offices and stores that needed to be cooled down after being closed over the hot weekend.

Dogged Determination Marks Firms' Reacquisition of Petco

For animal lovers and investment banks, the numbers are equally compelling: Americans will spend roughly $38 billion on pet supplies, food, and veterinary care this year, a 35 percent jump in the past five years.

Long Growth Streak Breaks as Vacancies Rise and Sales Slide

After growing at a blistering pace over the past few years, the Inland Empire's office and industrial markets finally saw a slowdown last quarter, with increased vacancy rates and dips in sale and lease activity and net absorption.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Crown Media's CFO Resigns; Digital Insight Settles Arbitration; Capstone CEO Resigns

Surging Imports Drive Warehouse Demand

Surging imports from Asia continued to fuel demand for warehouse space in the South Bay, pushing industrial vacancy rates to their lowest level in more than a decade.

New Regulations on Car Insurance Should Be Rejected

There soon may be new rules to determine auto insurance rates in California. Called "fairer" by the CDI, this "zero sum" change is bad public policy, does nothing to address the underlying cost escalators in the insurance system and should be rejected.

SPECIAL REPORT: Past Tense

On Washington Boulevard next to Giroux Glass Inc. used to stand a small, rat-infested and derelict market that had been built about 1950.

Profit on the Docket

Gerald Salzman, president and chief executive of legal publisher Daily Journal Corp., is one of the few newspaper owners these days who isn't crying about declining profit margins.

Stamps.com Feeling Heat From Rival and Street

Stamps.com, the L.A.-based do-it-yourself stamp company, is hoping it won't take a licking from investors when it issues its second quarter earnings report Wednesday.

Space Gets Absorbed in Both Office and Industrial Markets

Despite concerns over a looming economic slowdown, the San Gabriel Valley's trade dependent commercial real estate market continued to tighten in the second quarter.

Friday, July 21

C-17 Gets Funding

The C-17 cargo jet program in Long Beach got a boost Friday when the Senate Appropriations Committee approved $542 million in funding for three additional planes.

Study: L.A. Economy Still Creating Jobs

L.A.'s job market showed some surprising strength in June as the unemployment rate dropped to a seasonally adjusted 4.6 percent from 5.1 percent in May and 5.3 percent a year ago.

Weekend Ripe for Box-Office Duel

Can a lady in the water turn the box office tide against Capt. Jack Sparrow? And how will "Clerks II" fare with moviegoers after a 12-year gap since the first film?

Headlines From Friday's Papers

Auto Insurers File Suit Over New Risk-Assessment Rules; Home Price at Record High; Edison Ups Rates for Heavy Users; Watch Out! 3-D Is Back; Studios Say It's Improved; Carson Council Cracks Down on Filming in City ...

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Murdoch Exploring Satellite TV Merger?; Villaraigosa Appointment; Herbalife Restructures Debt; Hilton Declares Dividend ...

Dow Closes Down 60, Nasdaq Down 19

Rising oil prices and uncertain news from the technology sector sent stocks lower for a second straight session as Wall Street prepared to close out a volatile week of trading, the Associate Press reports.

Gas Prices Leveling Out?

Gasoline prices appear to have found a plateau as prices in most areas declined slightly, while others experienced small increases.

Oil Holds Steady on Economic Worries

Crude oil prices were steady as concerns about Mideast fighting were weighed against comments by the U.S. Federal Reserve chief that surging energy prices are crimping economic growth.

Amgen Sees Sales Surge

Despite charges relating to a recent acquisition, biotech giant Amgen Inc. beat Wall Street second-quarter forecasts on Thursday as it reported double digit increases in sales of its drugs to fight anemia, infection and inflammation.

Thursday, July 20

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Target Buys Local Mall Stores; Oxy Gives Back; First Regional Declares 3-for-1 Stock; IHOP Looks to Expand Franchises ...

Online Job Demand Dips

Online job demand in Los Angeles slipped slightly in June, led by declines in demand for military and aerospace jobs, according to a monthly survey of online job listings by Monster Worldwide Inc.

Dow Ends Down 83, Nasdaq Down 41

Wall Street retreated Thursday as mixed earnings news and rising oil prices prompted investors to take profits from a sharp rally in the prior session.

Headlines From Thursday's Papers

As Layoffs Sweep Movie Studios, Hollywood Fears for Its Future; Elder Bush Enlisted by Governor's Campaign; Movie Execs Charged in Money-Laundering Case; Marineland to Clear Out ...

Reliance 2Q Profit Doubles

Reliance Steel & Aluminum Co. reported second quarter net income of $100 million ($2.65 per share), nearly double the $49 million ($1.48 a share) for the same period a year earlier.

WPT Sued By Tour Players

Seven of the best-known poker players in the U.S. sued WPT Enterprises Inc., accusing the company of persuading casinos to host only its televised events.

Wild Rivers, Verizon Venue May Move

A large swath of land that's home to the Verizon Wireless Amphitheater and the Wild Rivers water park is being converted into a residential neighborhood.

Televisa Sues Univision

Grupo Televisa filed a lawsuit against Univision for the right to distribute its programming in the United States over the Internet.

Crude Prices Fall on High Gas Supply

Crude oil prices fell slightly Thursday, extending losses from a day earlier, when the Department of Energy reported an unexpected increase in U.S. gasoline supplies.

PG & E; to Spend Big on Efficient Meters

PG & E; Corp. will spend up to $1.8 billion installing advanced electric and gas meters in Northern California, the biggest effort by any U.S. utility to use technology to reshape electric-consumption habits.

Wednesday, July 19

Fuel Leak Blamed for Rocket Failure

The maiden launch of a private rocket bankrolled by millionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk was doomed by leaking fuel that caught fire seconds after liftoff, a government review board said.

Oil Prices Tumble for Third Straight Day

Crude oil prices fell for the third straight day on Wednesday, briefly dipping below $72 a barrel after a surprising increase in U.S. gasoline supplies.

Ryland's 2Q Profit Off 9%

Ryland Group Inc., the nation's eighth-largest homebuilder, reported a 9 percent decline in second-quarter profit.

VICA Opposes LAUSD Compromise

The board of the Valley Industry and Commerce Association voted against the compromise Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa struck on leadership of the LAUSD.

Consumer Inflation Slows in June

Consumer inflation slowed in June, helped by a temporary drop in energy prices.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Earnings: City National Corp.; Fox Atomic Announces Comic/Movie Deal; Advanced Photonix Gets Contract

Stocks, Bonds Rally on Fed's Remarks

Wall Street shot higher after Ben Bernanke soothed investors with his view that economic growth seems to be moderating and inflation remains contained.

Headlines From Wednesday's Papers

Disney Fires Film Production President; Reporter Sues YouTube Over Copyrights; Stem Cell Patents Challenged; Home Price Growth Slowing; Apartment Shortage Guarantees Rent Hikes ...

Tuesday, July 18

N.Y. Times to Cut Page Size and Jobs

The New York Times Co. plans to reduce the width of its flagship newspaper by an inch and a half and close a printing plant in Edison, N.J., resulting in the loss of about 250 jobs.

Headlines From Tuesday's Papers

Latest Retail Niche: Clinics; Galpin Starts Selling Hondas; Making Way for Home Depot; Illnesses From Beach Contamination Cost Millions; Redondo Seeks to Revitalize a Gritty Street

Disa Records Founders Sue Univision

The founders of Mexican regional music label Disa Records said Tuesday that they have filed a breach of contract lawsuit against the music division of Los Angeles-based Univision Communications Inc.

Stocks Slide As Oil Gains Build

Stocks sacrificed early gains and turned lower as investor enthusiasm over upbeat earnings and tame wholesale inflation data waned in the face of rebounding oil prices.

Oil Drops to $73.90

Oil prices tumbled for the second straight day Tuesday, sliding back to the level they traded at before fighting between Israel and militants in Lebanon began.

Dow, Nasdaq Stumble As Bond Yields Climb

Higher oil prices and a spike in bond yields pushed stocks lower Tuesday as investor enthusiasm waned over upbeat earnings and tame wholesale inflation data.

Markets Take U-Turn

A late-day rally gave stocks a moderate advance Tuesday as a second day of sharply lower oil prices calmed investors uncertain about the direction of interest rates.

Dollar Buying More Than "Safe Haven"

Was the dollar's recent sharp run higher against a backdrop of conflict in the Middle East a pure geopolitical safe-haven play? Not quite, some say.

Gas Prices Slightly Up

The average price of a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline in the Los Angeles Area was $3.287 for the week ended July 17.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Skechers Signs Simpson; THQ Forms New Development Team; Macerich to Lose COO; Radio Disney to Launch Mobile Channel

Monday, July 17

Magic Words

Howie Cohen wrote "Try It, You'll Like It" for Alka-Seltzer, and the slogan launched him into advertising stardom.

Headlines From Monday's Papers

NBC Universal Leader Heads to Paramount; Redondo Beach panel looks at changing Torrance Boulevard; For Ailing Disney, a Shot of Strong Medicine; Downloads of Films Soon to Be Burnable

Twins for Tweens

A new magazine from the company that built Mary-Kate & Ashley into a global brand is targeting boys this time.

Device Holds Backup of What's Stored on Your Cell Phone

With technological advances come new frustrations.

NEWSMAKERS

The appointments and promotions of the movers and shakers of L.A.'s business community.

Today's Special: Interruptions

Charles Crumpley has noticed that Los Angeles waiters and waitresses don't wait for you to finish talking.

Poker Tour Ups the Ante

WPT Enterprises has struck a $1.3 million deal with Silicon Valley's CyberArts to upgrade its online poker site.

Who's a Supervisor? NLRB's Answer Could Affect Unions

A labor-management battle is brewing in Washington that could have major implications for employers in California and across the nation.

L.A. Students Get Sweet Deal With Shopping at Sugar

L.A. Students Get Sweet Deal With Shopping at Sugar.

After-School Program Should Clean Up After Pies Fly for Ringling

The circus is taking to Hollywood's streets when it comes to town next month.

Spin Doctor

Gary Goddard's company creates high-tech attractions across the United States.

Solid Job Growth Forecast for L.A. County's Economy

L.A. County's economy should continue to see solid job growth as outlying areas from Long Beach to the Antelope Valley rack up record levels of employment.

Mammoth Malibu Parcel Goes on Market

A sprawling landscape of hills and canyons near Pepperdine University in Malibu may be sold for development of estates.

Majority Owner of Vitesse Demands Drastic Measures

he majority shareholder of Vitesse Semiconductor Corp. wants the company to put itself on the auction block, among other measures.

It's a Small World After All

Companies at the bottom of the Business Journal's list sometimes face uncertain futures.

California Manufacturing Going Strong

California's manufacturing sector continues to be a robust performer with sustained expansion, according to a survey.

Private Equity Firms Buy Petco

Private equity firms Leonard Green & Partners LP and Texas Pacific Group have agreed to acquire San Diego-based Petco Animal Supplies Inc. for $1.8 billion, including the assumption of debt

Major Firms Flying High

Investors flocked to profitable companies such as Occidental and CB Richard Ellis, and this added to their market caps.

Mattel Post 2nd-Quarter Profit

Mattel Inc., the world's largest toy maker, said it swung a second-quarter profit despite slips in sales for core Barbie and Hot Wheels brands.

Dow Ends Up 8, Nasdaq Unchanged

Wall Street limped to a mixed finish as uncertainty over the Middle East and a disappointing earnings report from Citigroup gave traders little impetus to buy after last week's selloff.

NBC Opens Division to Get the Bigger Picture

NBC Universal Inc. is launching a digital media distribution group to market photos from an archive with an estimated 12 million images.

So Much Good Has Come From California's Term Limits

Mike Spence points out the good things that have come from term limits in California.

Lawsuits Turn Showbiz Contacts Into Conflicts

Entertainment clients are increasingly bringing suits against managers, agents and lawyers.

Feeding Time

Businesses catering to nursing moms are popping up across Los Angeles.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Grill Concepts Opens Dallas Restaurant; Superior Galleries to be Acquired By DGSE; Amgen Studying New Drug for Chronic Kidney Disease; Tetra Tech Wins Army/Air Force Contract ...

Rule Change at Disney Allows Jobs to Work Without Paycheck

Hollywood thinks of itself as the capital of creativity, but when it comes to an out-of-the-box approach to executive compensation, entrepreneurs and investors should look to Silicon Valley's Steve Jobs.

Financial Picture Clears Up at Primedex Imaging Centers

Forced into Chapter 11 bankruptcy just a few years ago, Primedex Health Systems Inc. is now poised for national expansion and a turnaround.

Oil Prices Slide, Settle at $75 a Barrel

Crude oil prices fell more than 2 percent Monday as world powers stepped up efforts to broker a truce between Israel and militants in Lebanon.

Wine Bars Pop Corks in Culver City and West Hollywood

Los Angeles' wine bar list keeps growing.

Northwest, Flight Attendants in Deal

The union that represents Northwest Airlines Corp. flight attendants said it tentatively agreed to deep wage cuts and work rule changes.

Connecticut's Yarde Metals is Latest Reliance Steel Acquisition

Los Angeles-based Reliance Steel & Aluminum Co. is continuing its torrid acquisition pace with the purchase of Yarde Metals Inc.

Skadden Arps Opts for Artsy Celebration of Anniversary

The Los Angeles office of Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP is going beyond the traditional party and cake for its 25th anniversary celebration in 2008.

Litigation Means Expensive Health Care, So Businesses Flee

Bob Scott writes that litigation drives up health insurance costs and forces companies to flee the state.

High-Wage Jobs Leaving State

A recent study shows that the state's major industries all sustained some job losses from business relocations, and this effect is most pronounced among high-wage industries.

Tape Company Seals Deal in Flip of Industrial Building

Tape Company Seals Deal in Flip of Industrial Building.

Ramped Up

ASA Events in Marina del Rey has grown along with the popularity of skateboarding, inline skating and bicycle motocross.

Industrial Production Up 0.8 Percent

Industrial production rose significantly in June, reflecting advances in manufacturing, mining and auto production.

Most Profitable Firms Show Regional Economy's Diversity

Perennial achievers, plus a couple of newcomers, top the list of the most profitable public companies in L.A. County.

Friday, July 14

Santa Monica Names New City Planner

After a year-long search, the city of Santa Monica has tapped an East Coast planner as its new planning director.

Boeing C-17 Plant Closer to Closing

The Boeing Co. has told the government it needs a firm commitment for orders of its C-17 military cargo jet by August or it will have to begin the long process of shutting down the jet's production program.

Dow Ends Down 107, Nasdaq Down 17

Surging oil prices pulled stocks sharply lower for a third straight session, with bland earnings at General Electric Co. and weak consumer data further dampening the economic outlook.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Northrop Unveils New Protective Laser; Optical Communication to Acquire GigaComm

Builders' Fee Costs Skewed

The Los Angeles Building and Safety Department may have systematically overcharged developers, City Controller Laura Chick said.

Oil Prices Settle at $77 a Barrel

The price of oil briefly surpassed $78 a barrel and finished 4 percent higher for the week after Israeli attacks against Lebanese militants stoked fears of a wider Middle East conflict and possible oil-supply disruption.

Retail Sales Dip 0.1 Percent in June

Consumers continued to curtail their spending last month as rising gasoline prices dampened purchases of other goods, a fresh indication of a cooling economy.

Optical Communication Buys GigaComm

Optical Communication Products Inc. said Friday that it has agreed to acquire privately-held GigaComm Corp.

Headlines From Friday's Papers

Cable Giants Cleared to Buy Systems of Adelphia; Movie Studio Next Venture On Agenda For Johnson; Owner Strikes Back in Turmoil at Santa Barbara News-Press; San Diego Sees a Drop in its Median Housing Price ...

Thursday, July 13

Oil Hits New High at $76 A Barrel

Oil prices hit a new high above $76 a barrel sparked by violence in the Middle East, the standoff with Iran and news of explosions on Nigerian pipelines.

Dow Ends Down 167, Nasdaq Down 36

Stocks plunged for a second straight session Thursday as Wall Street battled a storm of negative factors - soaring oil prices, interest rate jitters and a slowing economy.

Oil Prices Settle Above $78 a Barrel

Oil prices surged to a record above $78 a barrel in a market agitated by escalating violence in the Middle East and the threat of supply disruptions there and beyond.

L.A. City Tech Manager Resigns

Thera Bradshaw, general manager of the Los Angeles City Information Technology Agency (ITA) has resigned her position and plans to retire.

WaMu Cuts 140 More Jobs

Washington Mutual Inc.'s big Chatsworth campus took another hit today, losing 140 more jobs, as the bank continued its aggressive cost cutting.

Headlines From Thursday's Papers

Tribune Profit Falls on Circulation Woes; Area Could Lose Asset With Rockwell Sale; L.A. Moves to Put $1 Billion Housing Measure on Ballot; Boeing Sets August Deadline for C-17 Plant ...

Jobless Claims Jump

The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits jumped last week, apparently reflecting the spring slowdown in the economy, the Associated Press reports.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Disney to Sell Debt, Has Bad Day on Wall Street; ePoint Gets Airport Security Deal; IHOP Sees Rise in Sales; KB Home Declares Dividend

Wednesday, July 12

Disney To Cut Jobs, Film Production

Walt Disney Co. will reduce the number of movies it releases and trim its work force, according to a report in the entertainment trade paper "Daily Variety."

S.E.C. Looks to Cut Costs

The Securities and Exchange Commission said that it expected to propose a rule aimed at curbing costs for businesses.

Forecast: L.A. Economy Looking Strong

L.A.'s economy should continue to see solid growth despite the slowdown in housing as other sectors take up the slack.

Inglewood Resists Wal-Mart

The Inglewood City Council gave initial approval Tuesday night on legislation that will allow greater public input over decisions to let Wal-Mart and other retailers build superstores in urban areas.

U.S. Trade Deficit Widens

The U.S. trade deficit widened during May, pressured by higher oil prices, which jumped by the largest amount since 1990.

Headlines From Wednesday's Papers

Sales of DVDs Slow; Senate Votes to Ease Drug Imports; Drivers Insured by AAA May See Rates Fall; Jury Convicts El Segundo Aircraft Supplier; Santa Barbara News-Press Names New Editors

Oil Prices Jump Toward $75 a Barrel

Oil prices jumped toward $75 a barrel Wednesday after world powers agreed to send Iran back to the United Nations' Security Council for possible punishment.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Northrop Lands Billion-Dollar IT Contact; Lion's Gate Grabs "South Park" Distributor; Universal Detection Establishes Consulting Firm; Sea Launch Names New Sales V.P. ...

Dow Ends Down 121, Nasdaq Down 39

Stocks plunged as a broker's downgrade of Dell Inc. and higher oil prices aggravated Wall Street's worries about a shaky start to second-quarter earnings. The Dow Jones industrial average sank more than 121 points.

Tuesday, July 11

More Coins Added to 'Chest'

Box office phenomenon "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest" added to its legend.

Budget Deficit Drops Under Estimate

President Bush touted new deficit figures showing considerable improvement upon earlier administration predictions, saying it shows the wisdom of his tax cuts.

Headlines From Tuesday's Papers

4 Hollywood Landmarks Proposed for Overhauls; Mortgage Rate Stability Seen; Insurers Vow Battle Over Auto Rate Plan; Defense Titans Seek New Israeli Sales; Technicolor Production Plant Reduces Work Force ...

Firms Slash Fees

Mutual fund companies are now touting low prices instead of high performance when it comes to selling funds.

Amgen Spits Out Poison Pill

Two months after shareholders called on Amgen Inc. to junk its so-called "poison pill" policy, the biotech giant's board of directors have voted to terminate the company's stockholder rights plan.

Dow Closes Up 31, Nasdaq Up 12

Stocks recouped earlier losses to end higher as investors set aside nervousness over an uneasy start to the second-quarter earnings season.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

L.A. Region Gets Lower-Income Housing Money; Jacobs Lands San Bernardino Contract; EMAK Names New Independent Auditors; EchoStar, Comcast Sue Finisar; KB Homes Gets Quality Certification ...

Comptroller Critiques Department

Los Angeles City Controller Laura Chick has released a sharply critical audit of the city's Department of Building and Safety, saying it has serious deficiencies in enforcement of building codes and inspections.

Another Rider Injured on Disney Ride

A woman passed out yesterday after getting off the "Mission: Space" flight simulator at Walt Disney Co.'s Epcot amusement park.

Reliance Buys East Coast Steel Co.

Los Angeles-based Reliance Steel & Aluminum Co. continued its torrid acquisition pace with the purchase of Yarde Metals Inc.

Assessed Property Values Jump in L.A.

Assessed property values in Los Angeles County have jumped 11 percent over the last year to a record $950 billion, led by sales of single-family homes.

Monday, July 10

Start of the Deal

Summer associates at Sheppard Mullin get a taste of what life is like in the world of corporate law. Some of the training comes through simulating a property sale.

Collector's 'Haul' of Fame Set for Downtown

While Gary Cypres has offered private tours of his memorabilia from athletes, the Cypres Sports Museum will open the treasure trove to the public soon.

Fashion Startups, Boutiques Planning Pool Party

L.A.-based Pool, a fashion show for startups, will hold its first show this month under its new ownership, Advanstar.

Entrepreneur,State Launch Film Fund Site

Will advertisers fund production of a film in return for exposure?

A Resurrection for the Grateful Dead

The Grateful Dead has announced a licensing agreement with Rhino Entertainment to manage exclusively all of the band's intellectual property.

Newsmakers

The appointments and promotions of the movers and shakers of L.A.'s business community.

'Tar-zhay' Chic

Target and other mass-market brands are making inroads into exclusive racks at boutiques and tony department stores where they once were barred.

The Market, Not Regulators, Should Decide the Internet's Future

Nick Gillespie believes that the online world will be better regulated by the free market than by the government.

Medical Staffing Company Files For Stock Sale

The once-troubled medical staffing firm On Assignment has filed a shelf registration with the Securities and Exchange Commission in hopes of selling additional stock to generate as much as $125 million for acquisitions.

Oil Prices Fall Below $74 a Barrel

Crude oil prices fell Monday after recent increases and as worries eased about Iran, but analysts said the pressures driving higher prices remained in force.

Smoothest Scalps

Todd Greene's 5 o'clock shadow on his scalp led him to develop a cutting-edge razor and build a company.

Cause for Concern?

Are you worried about the economy?

Culver City Toy Company Juiced by Seuss

Culver City-based Small World Kids Inc. has signed a deal to develop Dr. Seuss-branded toys.

Forgeries, Theft Take Some of the Thrill Out of Collectibles

Growth in forgeries and stolen items has dampened enthusiasm among collectors of sports memorabilia.

Tetra Tech Recovers and Seeks Contracts in Homeland Security

Tetra Tech Inc.

Select Company

Lean Forward Media is launching an updated version of the "Choose Your Own Adventure" series on DVD, hoping that parents who grew up with the original books will want their kids to enjoy them, too.

Ratkovich Forms New Partnership for Alhambra Complex

Developer Wayne Ratkovich has found a new partner for his San Gabriel Valley mixed-use office campus,

Office Park Tenants Face Choice of Moving Out or Buying In

Tenants of a business park in San Dimas were surprised to learn the owners wouldn't renew their leases, so they'd have to move out or buy in.

Using the Brangelina Model, Celebrities Can Win the Game

Michael Levine writes that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie have altered the balance of power in the world of celebrity journalism.

Shareholder Demands Vitesse Sale

The largest shareholder of troubled Vitesse Semiconductor Corp. is demanding that the Camarillo-based computer network chipmaker be sold.

Interest Rates Squeeze High-End Homes

Some sectors of Southern California's housing market are starting to feel the pinch from rising interest rates, particularly in such upscale communities as Bel-Air, Westwood and Pasadena.

The Clerks Return With a Viral Promotion via MySpace

Leave it to independent film impresario Harvey Weinstein to make a quirky marketing splash on the Internet.

Bolling Green

Half of the nation's 17 million bales of cotton exports now exit from Los Angeles and Long Beach ports, driven by the insatiable demand from Chinese textile mills and garment makers.

Korean Air Expands to Meet Demand for Flights to China

Increasing commerce between the United States and China and other Asian countries has created a market niche for Korean Air.

It's a Great Night For Classic Film Fans With a Cause

It's A Great Night For Classic Film Fans With A Cause

NASA Seeks to Spur Space Sector

NASA Administrator Michael Griffin thinks a little seed money from government could push the commercial space industry.

Custom Care

Most attorneys don't track down million-dollar cars and make urgent funeral arrangements. Tim Lappen does.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

WPT Gets Brand Awards; CB Richard Ellis Buys U.K. Companies; J2 Communications Sued; Caynon-Johnson Ventures Into Boston

Online Jeweler Bidz.com Puts Brakes on IPO

Bidz.com Inc., a successful Culver City-based online jewelry retailer, has indefinitely delayed an initial public offering.

Marvel Pioneer Tries to Build A Superhero on Reality TV

Stan Lee, the former editor-in-chief at Marvel Entertainment Inc., wants to find the next great crime-fighter in Spandex, and he has a new TV show to help him.

Dow Ends up 13, Nasdaq Down 13

Stocks finished an uneasy session mixed as investors grew nervous ahead of the second-quarter earnings season.

Gas Inching Up, Again

The average price of a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline in the Los Angeles Area was $3.283 last week, up 6 cents from the previous week.

Wall Street Missing the Beat As Live Nation Gets the Blues

Concert promoter Live Nation Inc.'s acquisition of the House of Blues nightclub chain will give the company more locations and greater ticket sales and revenues, but investors aren't enthusiastic.

Area Code Overlay Creates 11-Digit Fidget

Beginning July 26, all calls made within the 310 territory must include the area code with the number. That means automatic dialers must be reprogrammed and many businesses aren't prepared.

Headlines From Monday's Papers

Major Shift in Auto Policies; 'Moviegoing' is Taking on a Whole New Meaning; As Hurricane Season Begins, Disaster Insurance Runs Short; More `Must Sell' Properties as Market Cools ...

How Can You Spot a Pioneer?

Charles Crumpley considers Hallmark's pioneering shot at Univision in light of Haim Saban's recent buyout.

Fashion Retailer Forever 21 Goes on Expansion Rampage

Forever 21 Inc., the domestic queen of cheap, fast fashions, is expanding its empire.

UTI to Purchase Israeli Freight Companies

Rancho Dominguez-based UTi Worldwide Inc., said it plans to acquire a pair of Israel-based freight forwarding companies.

Aesthetics on Menu At Playa Vista Diner Designed by Gehry

A food stand in Playa Vista was designed by groundbreaking architect Frank Gehry, better known for world famous edifices such as Walt Disney Hall.

Christensen Glaser Partners Reunite With an Old Friend

Skip Miller, the former No. 2 at Christensen Glaser Fink Jacobs Weil & Shapiro LLP, has opened his own firm and snagged two partners from his old firm.

Friday, July 7

Bell Lands Contracts, Looks to Add Jobs

Bell Industries Inc. said it received new services contracts and estimated the new contracts will add about $30 million to its revenue in 2007 and about 500 new jobs.

Cathay Buys New Asia Bancorp

Los Angeles-based Cathay General Bancorp said that it has agreed to purchase New Asia Bancorp Inc., owner of New Asia Bank, for $23.5 million in cash and stock.

Gas Prices Inching Back Up

A seven-week downward trend ended as consumer demand for gasoline pushed prices up across the Southland this week.

Primedex To Buy Texas Imaging Chain

Los Angeles-based Primedex Health Systems Inc. said that it will buy Radiologix Inc. in a cash and stock transaction valued at around $208 million.

Dow Ends Down 134, Nasdaq Down 25

Corporate profit warnings and record oil prices overshadowed a benign jobs creation report and sent stocks sharply lower Friday as the Dow Jones shed 134 points.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Weekend Sales May Determine Fate of "Pirates" Series; Direct TV May Face More Penelties in Patent Case; Shoe Pavilion Names New CFO; Clearant Expands Sterile Bone Implants Use ...

Six Flags CEO Faces Tough Climb

New Six Flags Chief Executive Mark Shapiro isn't having much fun this summer at the company's 30 theme parks.

Headlines From Friday's Newspapers

A Taste of NYC in Monterey Park; EMI and New Music Label Plan Profit-Sharing Deal With Artists; Spelling's Chateau Going on Market?; Energy firm acquires Glendora-based Parke Industries ...

College District Grants Contracts

The Los Angeles Community College District has awarded nearly $80 million in construction contracts for upgrades at three of its nine campuses.

99 Cents Only Stores See Increased Sales

99 Cents Only Stores said sales for the fiscal first quarter of 2006 ending June 30 rose by 7.7 percent to $263.6 million.

Thursday, July 6

Guess? Same-Store Sales Rise in June

Los Angeles-based clothing retailer Guess? Inc. said that same-store sales for June grew 11.7 percent.

Grey's Anatomy, 24 Lead Emmy Charge

Fox drama "24" starring Kiefer Sutherland and ABC's medical drama "Grey's Anatomy" were among the top nominees for the 58th Annual Emmy Awards.

Oil Eases Down

Oil prices eased for the second day in a row on Friday after briefly hitting record territory above $75 a barrel on geopolitical tensions and rising gasoline demand.

Boeing Lands Contract For GPS Satellites

Boeing Co. said the Air Force has it a $138 million option to build three additional Global Positioning System, or GPS, satellites.

Headlines From Thursday's Newspapers

Televisa Could Battle Its U.S. Partner; Jobless Claims Fall Last Week; Networks Post Drop in Prime-Time Ad Sales; AOL Mulls Giving Away Service; $138 Million Option Awarded to Boeing's El Segundo Facility ...

Univision: TV Lineup Won't be Affected

Univision Communications Inc. assured investors that its lineup of television shows from Mexican broadcaster Televista would not be interrupted even if Televisa decides to sell its 11 percent stake in the company.

Occidental Takes Loss Due to Seizures

Occidental Petroleum Corp. said it will take a $306 million after-tax charge after Ecuador's government seized the company's oil fields there.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Governor: No Tax Increase in Second Term; Jacobs Lands Contract for New Plant in India; Salem Communications Sells Florida Station to Cox; DaVita Selects New CFO

Wednesday, July 5

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

NetSol Completes Purchase of McCue Systems; IndyMac Passes on Spin-off IPO; Hot Topic Not So Hot in June; Symantec Honors En Pointe; IHOP Hits Ohio

Health Sciences Group Appoints CEO

Health Sciences Group Inc. said Wednesday that its board of directors has appointed Stuart Gold chief executive .

Televisa to Sell Univision Stake

In a Wednesday filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, Mexican broadcaster Televisa said it wants to sell its stake in Univision Communications Inc.

Factory Orders Up in May

Orders to U.S. factories for manufactured goods rebounded in May as strengthened demand for petroleum and chemicals offset weakness in commercial aircraft and autos.

CB Richard Ellis Buys Affiliate

Real estate firm CB Richard Ellis Group, Inc. announced that it has acquired The Polacheck Company, a commercial real estate services firm based in Milwaukee, Wis., for approximately $20 million.

Kerkorian May Take Control of GM

Billionaire investor Kirk Kerkorian could seize control of General Motors Corp. easily with help from automakers Nissan and Renault.

Oil Prices Soar to New Record

Oil prices soared to a new record above $75 a barrel, propelled by a rally in gasoline and geopolitical tensions.

Live Nation Gets Blues

Concert promoter Live Nation Inc. has struck a deal to acquire nightclub operator HOB Entertainment Inc. for $350 million.

Dow Closes Down 76, Nasdaq Down 37

Concerns over North Korea's nuclear ambitions and a new intraday record for oil prices sent stocks lower and added to Wall Street's worries about the economy and interest rates.

Oil Prices Jump on Geopolitical Concerns

Brent crude rose and Nymex futures pared their losses after North Korea test-launched several missiles, bringing geopolitical concerns back in focus.

L.A. Gas Average Still Tops in Nation

The average price of a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline in the Los Angeles Area was $3.217 for the week ended July 3.

Headlines From Wednesday's Newspapers

Stem-Cell Center Gets $10 Million; Mix Film Wizardry With Cheap Plastic And You Get 3-D; Immigrant Overhaul Legislation Heats Up; 'I Dos' Won't be Don'ts Aboard Queen Mary ...

Enron Founder Kenneth Lay Dies at 64

Enron Corp. founder Kenneth Lay, who was convicted of helping perpetuate one of the most sprawling business frauds in U.S. history, died Wednesday of a heart attack in Colorado. He was 64.

Lay's Death Stuns California Regulators

Kenneth Lay, the disgraced former Enron Corp. chairman who became a target for criticism during the California energy crisis, died early Wednesday, the Sacramento Bee reports.

Monday, July 3

Orange, L.A. County Backing Helps Bank Launch With Bang

Like many new L.A. financial institutions, 1st Enterprise drew twice the level of commitments it needed from investors.

Pie Fight

California Pizza Kitchen is taking a bigger slice out of the frozen sector.

Toyota Tapping Classic Rappers

Toyota is collaborating with old-school hip-hop stars to help it connect with the youth market that drives sales of the company's Scion models.

Cheesecake Factory Adjusting in Bid to Reheat Shares

Cheesecake Factory Inc. might pile its plates high, but its stock has been falling down.

Par Excellence

Throughout Southern California, privately owned high-end daily fee courses open to the public have spent millions of dollars within the last two years in a refurbishment frenzy.

Cities Should Enlist Business in Their Battle Against Crime

Neighborhood crime has always been bad for business.

Congress Must Do Its Job So Immigrants Can Find Theirs

The June 19 op-ed article by Daniel J.B. Mitchell, "Address Illegal Immigration by Increasing Minimum Wage," presents "Plan C" to solve illegal immigration.

Oil Climbs Above $73 a Barrel

Oil prices rose Monday on anticipation that large numbers of Americans will take to the road for Independence Day.

Impco Reorganizes With Holding Company

IMPCO Technologies Inc., based in Cerritos, said June 28 that it plans to reorganize the company and create a new holding company, Fuel Systems Solutions Inc., of which Impco will be a subsidiary.

ING Clarion Takes El Segundo Building for $40 Million

ING Clarion has snapped up the 216,600-square-foot Douglas Technology Centre in El Segundo for about $40 million.

Carts Feature GPS Systems

GPS systems are now showing up on carts at public courses in the Los Angeles area.

Extreme View

AOL has come to Los Angeles to launch an action sports Web site.

Ports Announce $2 Billion Plan for Pollution Cleanup

The ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach have unveiled a sweeping 10-year clean air plan.

Caltech, BP Team For Nano Solar Cell

Caltech has teamed up with BP to find better ways of producing solar cells.

Law Firm's Ranking Among Most Profitable Is a Mystery

The attorneys at Los Angeles-based Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith LLP were surprised to find their firm listed as No. 133 on the American Lawyer's list of the 200 most profitable law firms this year.

Hollywood Park Racing Nearing Its Finish Line

A video gambling bill many insiders see as crucial to the survival of Hollywood Park racetrack has stalled in the state Legislature and could be dead.

Rough Road for Magnetek Continues

Magnetek close to being delisted from the New York Stock Exchange due to poor market cap.

L.A. Business Climate Gets Even Cloudier

Los Angeles remains the highest cost city for business in Southern California, according to a survey.

Accounting Firm Plays Name Game At Kudos Banquet

Apparently even accountants can poke fun at themselves.

Business Journal Wins Accolades From Press Club

The Business Journal received two first-place awards from the Los Angeles Press Club.

Upper Crust

Carol Head left the world of big business to take over Oliver's Artisan Breads.

Dow Closes Up 78, Nasdaq Up 18

Wall Street kicked off the third quarter with a sharp advance Monday as mild manufacturing and construction data lifted hopes about interest rates.

Headlines From Monday's Newspapers

Internet Calling Pressures Bells to Lower Rates; `Superman' Returns to Rescue Warner Bros.; Factories Slowed in June Amid Rising Prices, Weak Hiring; Topanga Mall Tries on Splash of Beverly Hills

'Job-Killer' Bills On the Hit List

A coalition of business groups has listed 32 bills making their way through the Legislature as "job-killers" and is trying to stop them.

Freight Expectations

Fran Inman of Majestic Realty Co. has become a specialist in transportation and infrastructure in her role at the L.A. Chamber of Commerce.

Abraxis Completes AstraZeneca Purchase

Abraxis BioScience Inc. has completed its $334 million acquisition of AstraZeneca plc's U.S.-branded injectable product portfolio.

Cal-OSHA Sets Rules on Keeping Workers Safe From Heat

A year after a series of heat-related fatalities among farm workers in the Central Valley, the California Occupational Health and Safety Administration's Standards Board has adopted regulations to prevent illnesses and deaths from heat exposure on the job

TBWA Opens Think Tank on Advertising for Digital World

African-American consumer yet have universal appeal," said Debra Turner, chief executive of TurnerPatterson.

Tax Liability Key in Dispute Between Chandlers and Tribune Co.

A question over taxes is at the heart of a battle between the founding family of the L.A. Times and Tribune Co.

Keeping the Heads on the Beds at the Omni Los Angeles

People across L.A. tell us how they do what they do.

BP Oil, Gas Output Tumbles Yet Again

BP PLC said its oil and natural-gas output fell for the fourth straight quarter and that the explosion at its Texas refinery last year will cost an additional $500 million.

Biz Briefs: News About Area Companies

Image Entertainment Selects Disk Maker and Northrop May Get Part of $5 Billion Pakistan Weapons Deal

Rocked Stock No Block for Gemstar CEO

Gemstar-TV Guide's chief executive will bring in a minimum bonus of 30 percent this year.

Pre-Film Ad Sales Turning Into Blockbuster For Theaters

The Cinema Advertising Council has released figures showing that revenue increased to $528 million in 2005.

Winner Faces Fight With Spurned Suitor

Haim Saban pulled off a stunning coup when his consortium won the bidding to acquire Univision Communications Inc.

Suite Deals

Shortly before 9/11, hospitality interior designer Kay Lang decided to leave the confines of Nadel Architects Inc. and venture out on her own.

Newsmakers & Kudos

The appointments and promotions of the movers and shakers of L.A.'s business community.

Flash in the Can

The fare at Associated Television International includes knockoffs of movies such as the "The Da Vinci Code."

Dude, Do You Want the Job?

I've been interviewing candidates for jobs lately, and it's served as a reminder of how deeply we've sunk into a mire of job casualness.

First Consulting Shaping Up As a Health Care Turnaround

Reorganization, cost-cutting and new blood in its leadership ranks appear to be doing a world of good for the health of First Consulting Group Inc., whose share price has risen 73 percent in the past year.

Mayor Balancing the Needs of Labor and Business Interests

A year into his term, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has toted up some successes on the business front, but executives have some concerns.

L.A. Catching Up to San Jose in the Race for Tech Title

L.A. has long had a second-city complex when it comes to tech.

Sunday, July 2

L.A. Gas Average Drops to $3.182

Gasoline prices inched lower for the seventh straight week, but there are signs they may be near their low point prior to the July 4th holiday weekend, according to an Automobile Club of Southern California survey.