Stories for August 2013

Friday, August 30

Former BBCN Chief Joins Commonwealth Board

Veteran banker Alvin Kang has joined the board of Korean-American lender Commonwealth Business Bank, the bank announced Friday.

The Week’s Biggest Movers

The Los Angeles Business Journal’s index of largest local public companies closed down slightly as the broader markets lost ground as well.

Murdoch Buys Prominent L.A. Vineyard Site

Billionaire media mogul Rupert Murdoch has completed the purchase of a hillside vineyard estate above Bel-Air (visible from the 405 and the Getty Center) for $28.8 million, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Tribune Co. Earnings Fall

Tribune Co., the parent of the Los Angeles Times, reported that earnings tumbled in the second quarter as revenue dropped in its broadcast division and newspaper advertising continued to fall, the Times reports.

France Supports U.S. Call for Action Against Syria

President François Hollande of France on Friday offered strong support for international military action against the Syrian government, backing the Obama administration just a day after the British Parliament rejected Prime Minister David Cameron’s call for intervention, The New York Times reports.

ILFC Moves Ahead With IPO Plan

American International Group Inc. is carrying on with plans for an initial public offering of its Los Angeles-based plane-leasing unit, International Lease Finance Corp., Bloomberg reports. But the IPO won’t happen if AIG can complete a sale of the business to Chinese investors.

VICA Revives San Fernando Valley Business Leadership Program

There is a leadership void in the San Fernando Valley. That’s the view of the Valley Industry & Commerce Association, and the influential business advocacy group is doing something about it, the Los Angeles Daily News reports.

Fast-Food Chains Face Challenges on Wages

Scattered protests and employee walkouts hit fast-food chains in 60 cities where workers want increased wages. Meanwhile, protest organizers are trying to create unions to represent fast-food workers, The Wall Street Journal reports.

One Direction Should Dominate The Box Office This Weekend

One Direction: This Is Us, should top the box office this weekend with an estimated $18 million, Forbes reports. The film cost just $10 million to make.

'Music Man Murray' Gershenz Dies at 91

Murray Gershenz, the record collector turned character actor died of a heart attack Wednesday, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Cumulus Radio Deal Could Crowd Clear Channel

Radio broadcaster Cumulus Media Inc. is close to acquiring one of the country's largest syndicators of radio programming, Dial Global Inc., in a deal that is likely to shake up the industry's competitive landscape, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Which Startup Could Be the Next Big Thing?

This year, there’s a new class of interesting startups to watch. Some are attracting record numbers of new users and significant amounts of venture capital, or appealing to new demographics, The New York Times reports.

Markets Fall

In Friday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 50 points, or 0.3 percent, to 14,791. The Nasdaq fell 28 points, or 0.8 percent, to 3,593. The S&P 500 dropped 6 points, or 0.4 percent, to 1,632.

Thursday, August 29

Settlement Reached Halting Alleged Fake Reviews on Edmunds.com

The Santa Monica company announced Thursday that Humankind Design Ltd. has agreed to stop registering accounts and posting reviews on the Edmunds website.

HuffPost Live Studio Closing

AOL’s HuffPost Live is shuttering the Beverly Hills studio where it produced talking heads programming daily as part of a Web video initiative of the Huffington Post.

Cheesecake Factory Expands to Puerto Rico

Cheesecake Factory Inc. opened the doors Wednesday on its first Puerto Rican outlet, a nearly 10,000-square-foot store in the territory’s capital.

Markets Up

In Thursday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 16 points, or 0.1 percent, to 14,841. The Nasdaq climbed 27 points, or 0.8 percent, to 3,620. The S&P 500 rose 3 points, or 0.2 percent, to 1,638. The LABJ Stock Index was unchanged at 163.

Retention Science Raises $750,000 More

As part of the deal, Kirsten Green, founding partner at Forerunner Ventures, will join the Retention Science board.

Council Lifts Ban on Public Murals

The Los Angeles City Council on Wednesday lifted a decade-long ban on public murals, marking a decisive victory for artists who argued the law made no sense in a city with such a rich tradition of street art, the Los Angeles Times reports.

San Bernardino Wins Eligibility for Bankruptcy

A federal bankruptcy court judge granted the city of San Bernardino eligibility for bankruptcy protection on Wednesday, raising the possibility that the city will propose a plan to dig itself out of debt by cutting money promised to the public pension system, The New York Times reports.

L.A. Fast-Food Workers Join Nationwide Strike

Fast-food restaurant employees in Los Angeles joined the largest-ever strike to hit the billion-dollar industry on Thursday, walking off their jobs for the first time in the city, reports KNBC.

Effort to Reduce California Prison Population Hits Wall

Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposal to spend $315 million over the next year to house inmates in private and county jails to ease state prison overcrowding was panned by fellow Democrats who countered with their own plan, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Blue Shield to Curb Coverage of Pricey Cancer Therapy

As hospitals race to offer the latest in high-tech care, a major California health insurer is pushing back and refusing to pay for some of the more expensive and controversial cancer treatments, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Time Warner Cable Customers Fuming as CBS Blackout Drags On

The continuing contract dispute between television giants CBS Corp. and Time Warner Cable Inc. has blacked out the CBS in more than 1 million Los Angeles homes served by the cable company, the Los Angeles Times reports. But analysts say the upcoming football season is likely to provide the tipping point.

With Disney Infinity, a Virtual Toy Box

When the executives at the Walt Disney Co. conceived of Infinity, they imagined a video game that resembled a toy box: random toys could be pulled out for any adventure, The New York Times reports. The Disney Infinity game, which was released last week, embraces that “anything goes” attitude with vigor.

New Flash of Optimism for Small-Business Owners

The overall economic outlook is unexceptional, but Main Street is more confident about the future than it has been in years, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Figuring Out What Time Is the Right Time to Start Hiring

It can be challenging for Willan Johnson to know how many people to employ at his pool-cleaning business, VivoPools, in Los Angeles, for a number of reasons, The New York Times reports. Like most business owners, Johnson always wants to avoid having too many people and not enough work.

The $1,000-an-Hour Lawyer Who Moonlights as Energy Healer

By day, Kenneth Klee inhabits the world of high-stakes bankruptcy cases at his law firm, Klee, Tuchin, Bogdanoff & Stern LLP, The Wall Street Journal reports. At night, Klee holds energy healings in a small room of his elegant, one-story home in the leafy Brentwood section of Los Angeles. Also, see the Business Journal’s earlier coverage.

Nissan Vows Self-driving Cars by 2020

Nissan said Tuesday that it will have multiple "commercially viable" self-driving vehicles ready for sale by 2020. It becomes the first major automaker to make such a pledge, USA Today reports.

Markets Rally

In Thursday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 80 points, or 0.5 percent, to 14,905. The Nasdaq rose 37 points, or 1 percent, to 3,630. The S&P 500 climbed 10 points, or 0.6 percent, to 1,645.

Wednesday, August 28

Intel Opening Santa Monica Office

An Intel spokesman confirmed with the Business Journal that Intel's L.A. office will be located on Colorado Street in Santa Monica.

Guess Shares Rise on Earnings

Shares of Guess Inc. shot up 18 percent in afterhours trading Wednesday after the downtown L.A. apparel maker announced better-than-expected earnings.

Ojai Voters Kick Out American States Water Subsidiary

Voters in Ojai on Tuesday approved a bond measure to allow a neighboring municipal water district to take over water service from a subsidiary of American States Water Co. of San Dimas.

AeroVironment Loss Widens

AeroVironment Inc. reported a big drop in revenue in its fiscal first quarter as orders for its unmanned drone aircraft continued to slow.

Stocks Rise

In Wednesday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 48 points, or 0.3 percent, to 14,825. The Nasdaq rose 15 points, or 0.4 percent, to 3,593. The S&P 500 climbed 4 points, or 0.3 percent, to 1,635. The LABJ Stock Index was up 1 point to 163.

Garcetti Declares Emergency Over Runaway Production

Mayor Eric Garcetti on Tuesday declared a state of emergency in the push to keep the film business in Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Daily News reports.

Disney Studio Plan Gets OK

A sprawling Santa Clarita Valley landscape that Walt Disney selected decades ago to be the backdrop for his movies and television shows will be transformed into one of the largest new studio developments in more than a decade under a plan approved Tuesday by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, the Los Angeles Times reports.

U.K. to Request U.N. Action in Syria

The U.K. said it will introduce a United Nations Security Council resolution Wednesday asking the body for authority to protect Syrian civilians, as Western diplomats stepped up efforts to build a coalition for attacking Syria, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Tesla Quietly Becomes a Best Seller

Tesla Motors’ Model S has quietly become the third-best selling luxury car in California, trailing only the Mercedes-Benz E-Class and BMW’s 5-Series, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Leiweke Reflects

Tim Leiweke says he wants to set the record straight, and he reflects about the end of his nearly 20-year relationship with Philip Anschutz, what he sees as L.A.’s strengths and weaknesses, why he’s still rooting for an NFL team to move here, Los Angeles magazine reports.

Regulators Prepare Penalties for JPMorgan

Two federal regulators are preparing a series of enforcement actions and fines against JPMorgan Chase stemming from its dealings with consumers during the recession in the latest legal woes facing the nation’s biggest bank, The New York Times reports.

Former Trader Surrenders in ‘London Whale’ Case

Weeks after the United States government charged Javier Martin-Artajo, a former JPMorgan Chase employee, with hiding trading losses that ultimately reached more than $6 billion, he had his first day in court on Tuesday as he surrendered to Spanish authorities and kicked off what could be a lengthy extradition process, The New York Times reports.

KPCC Shutters Blogdowntown

Eight years after Eric Richardson started one of the first blogs in downtown Los Angeles and two years after he handed it over to KPCC when he moved to Atlanta, KPCC announced that there will be no further postings on the blogdowntown site. All future coverage of downtown will be on its main news page, reports the blog L.A. Cowboy.

John Henry Visits L.A. Times

John Henry, the owner of the Boston Red Sox, showed up inside the offices of the Los Angeles Times. Henry recently bought the Boston Globe, and with the Times believed to be in play, New York Times media reporter Christine Haughney took notice, L.A. Observed reports.

In Fantasy and Reality, It’s a Frenzy for Football

Football has become critical to the American advertising-industrial complex. The seemingly limitless appeal of the sport among consumers — women, increasingly, as well as men — has made it almost as crucial a delivery vehicle for commercial messages as the holiday shopping season, The New York Times reports.

Markets Bounce Back

In Tuesday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 45 points, or 0.3 percent, to 14,821. The Nasdaq jumped 19 points, or 0.5 percent, to 3,598. The S&P 500 climbed 6 points, or 0.4 percent, to 1,637.

Tuesday, August 27

Maguire Sells Van Nuys Aviation Holdings

Maguire Aviation, the largest tenant at Van Nuys Airport, has been sold to national aviation operator Signature Flight Support in a deal valued at $69 million.

Colony Capital Shuffles European Executives

Santa Monica investment firm Colony Capital promoted two executives on Tuesday to lead its European investment strategy.

Railcar Maker to Hire 150 in Palmdale

Japanese light rail manufacturer Kinkisharyo International is looking to hire more than 150 employees for its Palmdale facility.

Former Long Beach Medical Supply Shop Owner Pleads Guilty to Fraud

The former owner of a Long Beach medical equipment supply company pleaded guilty in federal court in Los Angeles on Monday to a $2.6 million health care fraud scheme.

Markets Fall

In Tuesday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average dropped 170 points, or 1.1 percent, to 14,776. The Nasdaq was down 79 points, or 2.2 percent, to 3,579. The S&P 500 fell 26 points, or 1.6 percent, to 1,630. The LABJ Stock Index closed down three points to 162.

Some Port Truck Drivers Strike

At least 15 port truck drivers with a Carson-based trucking firm went on a 24-hour strike scheduled to culminate in a Tuesday rally, alleging their employer is trying to thwart their efforts to unionize, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Missiles May Hit Syria This Week

Missile strikes against Syria could be launched “as early as Thursday,” senior U.S. officials said Tuesday as the White House intensified its push toward an international response to the suspected use of chemical weapons, NBC News reports.

Syria Tensions Rattle Markets

Escalating political tensions between Syria and the U.S. started to bite into markets Tuesday, with U.S. Treasury debt prices, oil prices and safe-haven currencies all climbing as expectations of military intervention in the war-torn country grew, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Delta to Blast Off From Vandenberg

The nation’s largest rocket is ready to blast off from Vandenberg Air Force Base north of Santa Barbara, carrying spy satellite for the federal government, the Los Angeles Times reports. As early as 10:52 a.m. Wednesday, the Delta IV launch may be visible from the beaches of Los Angeles as it leaves a thick white plume over the Pacific.

Treasury Prods Lawmakers on Debt Ceiling

Unless Congress raises the debt ceiling, the Treasury Department said that it expected to lose the ability to pay all of the government’s bills in mid-October, The New York Times reports.

Plan to Allow Mega-Yachts to Moor in Newport Harbor Draws Criticism

When Rick Caruso’s mega-boat pulls in to Newport Harbor, it will dwarf the other cabin cruisers and sailboats there, the Los Angeles Times reports. But the pending arrival is also testing the patience of some Newport residents. Read the Business Journal’s earlier coverage.

Eddie 'Piolin' Sotelo Alleges Extortion, Sues Former Workers

Spanish-language radio star Eduardo "Piolin" Sotelo has sued six former workers from his canceled Univision Radio program, claiming the group banded together to try to extort $4.9 million from him, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Runaway Production: TV Drama Spreads All Over the Map

Atlanta. Chicago. New Orleans. Wilmington, N.C. Austin, Texas. Albuquerque, N.M. Ireland, Hungary and Puerto Rico. These are among the locales that TV producers and actors have to be prepared to call home, at least temporarily, if they are fortunate enough to land a primetime drama series, Variety reports.

Sirius XM Sued Over Music Royalties for Pre-1972 Recordings

The entity that collects performance royalties from digital music services for performers and record labels sued satellite-radio giant Sirius XM Radio Inc. for allegedly refusing to pay for older recordings, The Wall Street Journal reports.

On the Passing of Wall Street Icon Muriel Siebert

For a generation of women on Wall Street, Muriel F. Siebert was more than just a leader in finance; she was their point of reference. On Monday, her friends and admirers remembered other aspects of her personality, The New York Times reports.

Cronut Craze Hits Southern California Pastry Shops

New Yorkers have been going crazy for them for months — standing in lines around the block to get them or snapping them up for $50 on Craigslist. Now, Southern Californians finally have their chance to get a taste of the elusive cronut, the Los Angeles Daily News reports.

Stocks Drop

In Monday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 88 points, or 0.6 percent, to 14,858. The Nasdaq dropped 40 points, or 1.1 percent, to 3,617. The S&P 500 was down 14 points, or 0.9 percent, to 1,642.

Monday, August 26

Docstoc Acquires Recommendation Site

Docstoc has acquired New York recommendation site BestVendor to further build out its suite of products.

Aecom to Design Sacramento Kings Arena

Downtown L.A. construction and engineering firm Aecom has been hired as the lead architect to design a new arena for the Sacramento Kings, the NBA franchise announced Monday.

Response Genetics Acquires Cancer Test

East L.A. diagnostic testing firm Response Genetics announced Monday it had acquired an FDA-cleared test for diagnosing certain cancers.

Dow Jones, S&P 500 Drop

In Monday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average lost 64 points, or .04 percent, to 14,946. The Nasdaq dropped less than a point to 3,658. The S&P 500 was down seven points, or .04 percent, to 1,657. The LABJ Stock Index gained less than a point to 165.

Amgen to Acquire Onyx for $10.4 Billion

Biotech giant Amgen Inc. said it has reached a $10.4-billion deal for cancer drug maker Onyx Pharmaceuticals Inc., the Los Angeles Times reports.

Dodgers Owner Mark Walter Explores Possible Purchase of L.A. Times

Mark Walter, the controlling owner of the Dodgers, said he has been exploring a possible purchase of the Los Angeles Times, the Times reports.

Wildfire Threatens San Francisco's Water Supply

Crews battle to keep a massive wildfire from potentially closing San Francsisco's main water supply, a reservoir high in the Sierra Nevada with water that could be contaminated with ash from the inferno, The Wall Street Journal reports.

FYF Festival in L.A. Gets Bigger and Better

FYF Festival showed that it’s grown up and is ready to join the big boys in the Southern California music festival scene, the Los Angeles Daily News reports.

'The Butler' Wins Box Office Again With $17 Million

Further boosting its profile, Lee Daniels' The Butler topped the box office in its second weekend with $17 million, pushing its total to $52.3 million, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Pritzker Family to Buy TMS International for $687 Million

The billionaire Pritzker family will buy scrap mill servicing company TMS International Corp for about $687 million in cash, Reuters reports.

Influential Showbiz Attorney Irwin Russell Dead at 87

Irwin Russell, the entertainment attorney who was a key player in saving the Walt Disney Co. from corporate raiders in 1984, died Friday of complications from leukemia, according to Variety. He was 87.

A Calculated Push Into Entertainment Lifts ‘Duck Dynasty’ Family’s Fortunes

Forget the ZZ Top beards and the Bayou accents, the Robertsons of West Monroe, La., are a family of traditional American entrepreneurs: ambitious, rich and spectacularly successful, The New York Times reports.

Spit-Take in Hollywood at Dog Treat Promotion

A few weeks ago, about 15,000 plastic-wrapped copies of the Hollywood Reporter arrived on desks containing a “gluten free” nutrition bar — seemingly just another of the magazine’s advertiser-related giveaways, The New York Times reports. The president of one television studio chomped into it, as did one of his subordinates. It was dog food.

Stocks Rise

In Monday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 23 points, or two-tenths of a percent, to 15,033. The Nasdaq rose 17 points, or one-half of a percent, to 3,674. The S&P 500 was up 4 points, or two-tenths of a percent, to 1,668.

Solar Costs Not So Hot

COMMENT

Charles Crumpley is charging in to the debate over rising residential electricity rates.

Headway on Homelessness

OP-ED: Home for Good program’s reliance on sound business practices helps deliver gains on chronic problem.

Jerry Neuman and Chris Carey say Home for Good’s business-minded approach to homelessness has achieved real gains.

Peer Groups Work for Women Entrepreneurs

Female peer networks are a key to buoying women entrepreneurs, according to Shelly Ulaj.

Audio Technology Firm Hears It From Investors

ELECTRONICS: DTS stock drops after company lowers annual guidance.

DTS shares fall as the audio technology firm dials back its guidance for the year.

Relationship in Public Relations

Many couples work together, but not Glenn and Lisa Gritzner: They work at competing public affairs firms. Glenn Gritzner, 43, opened and heads the downtown L.A. office of Mercury Public Affairs, a Sacramento political strategy firm. Lisa Gritzner, 41, is president of Cerrell Associates, a public affairs and political strategy firm in Larchmont Village.

USC Student Makes Grade

Shireen Jaffer’s startup mentoring venture scores junior $2,000 scholarship.

Shireen Jaffer’s startup proved a class act and earned the USC business student a $2,000 scholarship.

Chef Fishes for More Business

Daniel Roberts to cook up whatever customers catch on special boating trips.

Chef Daniel Roberts angles to land new customers by cooking the catch from special fishing trips.

Towers Power Sky-High Offer

REAL ESTATE: $900 million bid for City National Plaza.

CommonWealth will raise its L.A. profile if it is able to finish its purchase of downtown’s twin-tower City National Plaza.

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Laundry-as-Service Firm Adds Investors to Fold

INTERNET: Washio relies on network of ‘ninjas’ to pick up, return clothes.

Quick, name something you hate doing.

Online Video Producers Turn Focus on Super Fans

INTERNET: Ventures look to go Dutch on cost of productions with audience.

Some content producers hope to get fans to play a major role in paying for productions.

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Long Beach Building Shores Up Buyer’s Portfolio

ACQUISITION: Unit of John Hancock picks up property for $135 million.

Landmark Square, one of only three Class A office properties in downtown Long Beach, sold earlier this month for more than $135 million.

Paso Robles Brewery Taps Venice for New Restaurant

Beer: Firestone Walker sees operation as mainly market research facility.

Firestone Walker brewery is pouring itself into a new dining and beer-making operation in Venice, which it will use to test market new brews.

Producers Struggle In Keeping It Real

TV: Reality show makers now facing authentic price pressures.

Producers of reality TV shows say it’s unreal how the genre is booming but they are not.

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‘Diversity’ Key Word for Communications Firm

MARKETING: Recession prompted Paolucci to look beyond real estate clients.

The real estate downturn forced Paolucci Communication Arts to sign up clients from other industries.

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Firm Hand

MANUFACTURING: Revitalized work-glove maker Ironclad to try on overseas markets.

Improved financials spur glove-maker Ironclad to try its hand in more overseas markets.

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Restaurateurs Study Up to Add Obamare to Mix

INSURANCE: Industry expo serves up chance to discuss employee coverage.

The hottest topic at last week’s 2013 Western Foodservice & Hospitality Expo wasn’t the latest in ergonomic chef knives or the annual Culinary Clash cook-off. It was Obamacare.

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‘In Shock’ From Workers’ Comp Rate Hikes

INSURANCE: Employers see rates rise while relief may be years away.

Employers are getting hit with high workers’ comp bills that they weren’t expecting.

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In Cross Hairs

Real-looking imitation guns targeted by city

Sellers of BB and airsoft guns fear revenue will take a hit if the city of Los Angeles pulls the trigger on new rules.

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Data Bank

Calendar and Events

News of the Week

Last week’s major news from labusinessjournal.com and other sources

Regional Report

News and notes from communities across Los Angeles County

Friday, August 23

Vantage Oncology Makes Acquisition

Vantage Oncology LLC in Manhattan Beach announced that a subsidiary has acquired Radiation Oncology Services of America Inc., which owns and operates 17 radiation oncology centers in five states.

KB Home Plans Another Inland Empire Development

KB Home said that it has acquired 40 acres of land in Eastvale, east of Los Angeles, and plans to build 207 houses there starting next spring.

Ryland Debuts Development in Indiana

Ryland Group Inc. has opened a new residential development in Indiana.

Great American to Liquidate Additional OSH Stores

Great American Group Inc. announced that it will manage store closings at nine additional Orchard Supply Hardware locations, including three in the greater San Fernando Valley.

NTS, Mandalay Among Week’s Biggest Movers

The Los Angeles Business Journal’s index of largest local public companies closed up slightly.

Indexes Rise

In Friday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed up 47 points to 15,010. The Nasdaq rose 19 points to 3,658. The S&P 500 rose 6 points to 1,663. The LABJ Stock Index rose less than 1 point to 163.

DWP Deal a Mixed Win for Garcetti

Mayor Eric Garcetti emerged from his first labor showdown with some concessions on Department of Water and Power salaries but little progress getting workers to contribute to health insurance costs, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Kochs No Longer Interested in Buying Tribune Papers

Billionaire industrialists Charles and David Koch are no longer contemplating a purchase of the Tribune Co.’s chain of newspapers, the New York Times reports.

Dodgers’ Winning Streak a Boon to Businesses

Struck by Dodgers fever, Southern Californians are generating extra business for Southland restaurants, sports bars and apparel shops, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Scully to Return in 2014

Hall of Fame broadcaster Vin Scully will return to broadcast Los Angeles Dodgers baseball games next year, the team is expected to announce today, Variety reports.

Broadway Financial Recapitalizes

Broadway Financial Corp., the Mid-Wilshire parent of Broadway Federal Bank, has announced it completed a long-planned recapitalization, the Los Angeles Business Journal reports.

Ballmer to Retire as Microsoft CEO

Microsoft Corp. Chief Executive Steve Ballmer, who has struggled to adapt the world’s largest software maker to the shift away from personal computers toward mobile devices, will retire after more than a decade at the helm, Bloomberg News reports.

Nasdaq Breakdown Puts Pressure on Crisis Work

The latest high-tech disruption in the financial markets increases pressure on Nasdaq and other electronic exchanges to take steps to avoid future failures, the Associated Press reports.

Covered California Site May Not Be Ready by Oct. 1

Less than six weeks before the launch of a major healthcare overhaul, California officials are scrambling to get their online enrollment system ready in time, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Hulu Kids Adds Jim Henson Shows

The online video service Hulu has added some energetic mop-top characters from Jim Henson Family shows, including the children's TV series, "Fraggle Rock," the Los Angeles Times reports.

Wal-Mart Snatching Silicon Valley Talent

Wal-Mart is going after Silicon Valley talent and investing heavily in new technologies in its push to grow internationally and take on competitors such as Amazon, Chief Executive Mike Duke tells CNBC.

LAUSD Makes Deal for Ad-Free Bing Searches

Students and staff at L.A. Unified School District can now use the Microsoft Bing search engine without having to see ads or adult-content links, the Los Angeles Times reports.

What’s on the Agenda for Jackson Hole?

Despite the meaty issues that will be discussed at the Kansas City Fed’s annual economic summit this weekend in Jackson Hole, Wyo., the Wall Street Journal reports that the conference may be most notable for what’s not on the agenda: Anything about the tenure and legacy of Fed Chief Ben Bernanke, who will not be attending.

Markets Gain

In Friday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 10 points to 14,974. The Nasdaq rose 11 points to 3,649. The S&P 500 rose 3 points to 1,660.

Thursday, August 22

Broadway Financial Completes Recapitalization

Broadway Financial Corp., the Mid-Wilshire parent of Broadway Federal Bank, has announced it completed a long-planned recapitalization.

Report: Amgen May Bid Less for Onyx

Thousand Oaks biotech giant Amgen Inc. could decide to pay less than it offered earlier this month for Onyx Pharmaceuticals Inc., after Onyx reportedly provided less-than-complete clinical trial data on a blood-cancer drug.

Good Quarter for Semtech but Outlook Cloudy

Semtech Corp. reported a better-than-expected fiscal second quarter profit, but was cautious about prospects, citing inventory issues at some smartphone manufacturers that use its semiconductors.

Pressure Increases to Continue Adult Film Moratorium

The adult film industry remained under a production moratorium Thursday after one performer tested positive for HIV.

Markets Up

In Thursday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed up 66 points to 14,964. The Nasdaq rose 39 points to 3,639. The S&P 500 rose 14 points to 1,657. The LABJ Stock Index rose 1 point to 163.

Urban Partners Take on Partners

Downtown L.A.'s Urban Partners said that it has joined with Seattle’s Harbor Urban and the Mack Real Estate Group to form a development and investment firm dubbed Mack Urban, which the Downtown News reports is a big step in an effort to make Urban a major West Coast real estate player.

Yelp Gets an Earful from Business Owners

At a Hollywood town hall meeting organized by Yelp, small-business owners slammed the review website, the Los Angeles Times reports, complaining about aggressive ad sales tactics and bogus reviews that hurt sales.

Actor's HIV Infection Prompt Call for Porn Filming Pause

A pornography actor's confirmed HIV infection prompted adult-industry leaders this week to call for an indefinite moratorium in filming, NBC Los Angeles reports.

Duck Nation Has Spoken

It’s a Duck Nation, and we’re all just living in it, Today reports. A&E; Network’s reality show “Duck Dynasty” catapulted last week to become the biggest unscripted show in cable history with its fourth season premiere.

Yahoo Gains on Google

Yahoo Inc. attracted more visitors than Google Inc. during July for the first time since May 2011, indicating that turnaround efforts by Chief Executive Marissa Mayer are gaining traction, Bloomberg News reports.

CBS Reaches New Verizon FiOS Carriage Deal

CBS and Verizon have reached a three-year carriage deal, allowing CBS channels to continue to be transmitted on Verizon's FiOS TV service, the Hollywood Reporter says. Les Moonves used the announcement to express his frustrations over the ongoing blackout with Time Warner Cable.

Edison Amps Up Peak Use Incentives

In return for monthly bill credits, some Southern California Edison residential and business customers are volunteering to reduce their power use, helping make up for the loss of the San Onofre nuclear plant, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Marvel Superheroes to Become Traveling Attraction

After its success with movies and products based on superheroes such as Iron Man and Thor, Marvel Entertainment has teamed with a Los Angeles start-up for a new traveling attraction based on the characters, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Mom and Pop Flee Emerging Markets

Retail investors have led the stampede out of emerging-market stocks, bonds and currencies, pulling out almost twice as much money as institutional investors, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Relativity's Revolving Door

Marketing is not for the faint of heart at Ryan Kavanaugh’s Relativity Media, the Hollywood Reporter says. The studio named its fourth marketing president in less than four years this week after Terry Curtin was shown the door following the dismal $3.5 million opening of "Paranoia."

Millennium Signs Deal with Prima

Film distribution company Millennium Entertainment has signed a deal with Prima Cinema Inc., which sells a high-end service that allows customers to watch first-run movies from home, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Tim Cook Leads Quiet Cultural Revolution at Apple

The Apple that Tim Cook runs is a different creature from the one led by his legendary predecessor Steve Jobs: a mature corporate behemoth rather than a scrappy industry pioneer. Reuters looks at whether Cook's cultural changes can restore Apple to its former glory.

Pinterest Pins Down Retail Revenue

USA Today looks at how Pinterest's popular online image scrapbooks are fast becoming a retailer's best friend.

MPAA, Internet Giants Take Piracy Battle to Patent Office

The Motion Picture Association of America and major Internet companies on Wednesday rebooted their long-running fight over content providers' role in protecting against piracy and counterfeiting, but this time in a new forum: the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, The Wrap reports.

JC Penney Adopts 'Poison Pill'

Struggling retailer J.C. Penney is adopting a plan to prevent a takeover attempt just two days after reporting its sixth straight quarter of big losses and steep revenue declines, the Associated Press reports.

Sorry Coffee Snobs, America’s Favorite Is Still Folgers

Trendy brands such as Starbucks and Green Mountain may now be taking up more space on supermarket shelves, but Bloomberg BusinessWeek reports that Americans still buy more Folgers coffee than any other brand.

Markets Rebound

In Thursday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 52 points to 14,950. The Nasdaq rose 35 points to 3,635. The S&P 500 rose 12 points to 1,655.

Wednesday, August 21

Report: Layoffs at Disney's TV Unit

Walt Disney Co. is laying off up to 175 employees at its Disney/ABC Television Group, according to news reports on Wednesday. The cuts are expected to come primarily at ABC-owned television stations.

Guess Promotes Internally to Fill COO Job

Guess Inc. late Wednesday said that it named its chief information officer, Michael Relich, to the position of chief operating officer.

Alaskan Buys Boost American Homes' Quarter

American Homes 4 Rent reported large revenue growth in its first earnings report since going public, mostly due to the acquisition of an Alaskan portfolio.

Indexes Fall; Dow Slips Below 15,000

In Wednesday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed down 105 points to 14,898. The Nasdaq fell 14 points to 3,600. The S&P 500 fell 10 points to 1,643. The LABJ Stock Index fell 1 point to 162.

Maker Studios Acquires Blip

Maker Studios in Culver City has agreed in principal to acquire the video network Blip.

JustFab Laces Up ShoeDazzle for Big E-commerce Pairing

JustFab Inc. and ShoeDazzle Inc. announced today that the subscription e-commerce companies would merge, bringing together two big names in an industry that has been a key part of Los Angeles’ tech scene.

Contract Votes Mixed for New Airport Board

Bids for a lucrative LAX media services contract were thrown out Tuesday amid conflict-of-interest allegations involving a former president of the Board of Airport Commissioners, the Los Angeles Times reports. But the newly appointed board did award a pair of controversial consultant contracts to manage ongoing construction, the Daily Breeze reports.

‘Grueling’ Hours in Focus after Intern’s Death

The widespread culture of long working hours and all-nighters for banking interns has been criticized after the death of a 21-year-old intern last week at Bank of America Merrill Lynch's investment banking division, CNBC reports.

Al Jazeera Makes Limited American Debut

There was ample attention in journalistic circles as Al Jazeera America had its premiere on Tuesday — particularly among those who were unable to watch it, the New York Times reports. A Washington Post review says the new cable channel is mostly what it aspires to be, but it needs to be more.

Supervisors Bicker over LACMA Construction

Responding to concerns that plans to rebuild the Los Angeles County Museum of Art could result in environmental damage to the La Brea Tar Pits, the County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to ask representatives from both landmarks to present details about the proposal within the next 45 days, the Los Angeles Times reports.

A Los Angeles That Never Was

The Wall Street Journal reviews the first museum exhibit to explore unbuilt work in Los Angeles, which addresses a question Angelenos and visitors alike have long pondered: How might this city have evolved had some of the countless unrealized projects come to pass?

Boeing Looks at Foreign Markets

While an important economic engine for Long Beach, Boeing Co. has brought uncertainty as well as prosperity to the community, the Daily Breeze reports in a look at the aerospace giant's local operations.

Fannie Mae Sees Jobs, Easier Terms Sustaining Home Sales

More jobs and easier loan terms will boost demand for new mortgages in the second half of this year as homebuyers shrug off higher interest rates, according to a Fannie Mae forecast issued Wednesday, Bloomberg News reports.

Poll: Californians Know Little About Health Exchange

A new Field Poll indicates that — less than two months before California's health insurance exchange opens for enrollment under federal health care reform — three-quarters of voters under age 65 say they've heard little or nothing about the exchange, the Sacramento Bee reports.

SEC Deals With Turnover at the Top

Longtime employees at the SEC say they can't remember another time when so many high-ranking officials have come and gone, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Facebook CEO Announces Internet Access Project

Facebook Inc. Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg said the company is partnering with six others to help bring Internet access to more than four billion people who still do not have it, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Comcast Looks to Block Suit by Sports Fans

Comcast is defending itself from charges of making anti-competitive agreements with the National Hockey League. The agreements allegedly have had the effect of forcing sports fans to pay what they consider to be overpriced fees to watch their favorite teams, the Hollywood Reporter says.

Dow Below 15,000 in Early Trading

In Wednesday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 51 points to 14,952. The Nasdaq fell 2 points to 3,611. The S&P 500 fell 5 points to 1,647.

Tuesday, August 20

Hanmi Returns to Paying Dividends

Hanmi Financial Corp. on Tuesday said its board has declared a cash dividend on its common stock of 7 cents a share, payable on Sept. 17.

Teledyne Buys Automated Lab Equipment Maker

A subsidiary of Teledyne Technologies Inc. has acquired a Nebraska company that makes automated laboratory equipment.

Tutor Perini Finalizes Contract for High-Speed Rail Project

Tutor Perini Corp. said Tuesday that its joint venture has executed a contract with the California High-Speed Rail Authority for construction of the first segment of the state’s bullet train.

Primco to Acquire Interest in Basketball Channel

Primco Management Inc. on Tuesday said that it has agreed to acquire a 20 percent equity ownership in the Basketball Channel, a digital broadcaster of sports programming.

Dow Falls, S&P, Nasdaq, LABJ Gain

In Tuesday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed down 8 points to 15,003. The Nasdaq rose 25 points to 3,614. The S&P 500 rose 6 points to 1,652. The LABJ Stock Index rose 1 point to 163.

OpenStack Provider Morphlabs Announces New Funding

Morphlabs Inc., which makes software and hardware for OpenStack cloud computing systems, announced $10 million in new funding.

TubeStart Helps Creators Work The Crowd

Online videos and crowdfunding seem to like one another.

Rodeo Drive Rents Cheap Compared with Top Sites in Other Cities

Rents for some of Southern California’s priciest retail locations are a steal compared with those in other prominent cities such as Hong Kong and New York, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Weinstein Co. Makes Deal with Netflix

The Weinstein Co, has agreed to a multiyear streaming deal for first-run films with Netflix, starting in 2016, the Hollywood Reporter says.

Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac Ignoring Write-Offs

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which have reported record profits after a taxpayer bailout, are ignoring billions of dollars in potential losses on overdue loans, Bloomberg News reports.

Loyola Law School Accepting Fewer Students

With alumni complaining they can't find employment, Loyola Law School is among universities reducing their incoming classes, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Verizon Woos CBS Staffers to Drop Time Warner Cable

Verizon FiOS is offering CBS employees exclusive discounts and special promotions to switch from Time Warner Cable, even sending sales teams to CBS offices in cities affected by the blackout to sign up new customers, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Labor Day Travel to Rise to Five-Year High

AAA forecasts that the number of Americans traveling for the Labor Day holiday weekend will climb to the most in five years as consumer confidence boosts spending, Bloomberg News reports.

Are Studios Releasing Too Many Animated Films?

There are signs that the abundance of animated movies may be nearing a saturation point as family audiences confront a growing number of choices, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Secretly Shot Disney-Set Film Gets Release

Producers Distribution Agency will release Randy Moore’s “Escape From Tomorrow,” a horror film shot surreptitiously at several Disney theme parks, Variety reports.

Is the Mall Becoming Cheaper Than Amazon?

Prices at Bed Bath & Beyond are on average 6.5 percent cheaper than at Amazon, showing that brick-and-mortar retailers aren't taking the company's ruthless price competition lying down, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Renovated Hospital to Cost More Than Expected

The long-awaited reopening of Martin Luther King Jr. Community Hospital in South Los Angeles will cost $32 million more than anticipated due to unforeseen site conditions, and may not be able to accept patients until early 2015, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Film about PCH Danger Gets Crowdfunded

Producer Michel Shane's 13-year-old daughter was killed by a speeding driver while she was walking along the Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu. Now Shane is using Kickstarter to raise money for a documentary film about that part of PCH dubbed "Blood Alley," the Los Angeles Times reports.

Study: Have More Sex, Earn More Money

CNBC reports about a serious new study that finds that sexually active people make more money.

Markets Rise

In Tuesday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 40 points to 15,051. The Nasdaq rose 23 points to 3,612 The S&P 500 rose 8 points to 1,654.

Monday, August 19

International Rectifier Narrows Loss

International Rectifier Corp. on Monday reported a fiscal fourth-quarter loss that was significantly smaller than Wall Street expected, as the maker of power management semiconductors benefited from higher revenue and improved gross margins.

Judge Weakens Portions of County's Adult-Film Condom Law

A federal judge has ruled that some sections of Los Angeles County’s mandatory condom law for adult film production are unconstitutional and cannot be enforced.

Down Day for Markets

In Monday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed down 71 points to 15,011. The Nasdaq fell 14 points to 3,589. The S&P 500 fell 11 points to 1,646. The LABJ Stock Index fell 1 point to 162.

Airport Media Contract Bidding May Start Over

Los Angeles officials will consider throwing out all bids submitted for a lucrative media contract at Los Angeles International airport because of conflict of interest allegations involving a former airport commission president whose firm is vying for the work, the Los Angeles Times reports.

21st Century Fox Buys Into Vice Media

Vice Media has sold a $70 million stake to 21st Century Fox, marking the latter’s first major deal since splitting off from News Corp. in June, Variety reports.

Al Jazeera Sees Void in Straight News

The most ambitious TV news venture in the United States since the advent of Fox News, Al Jazeera America plans to be heavy on serious journalism and light on opinion when it launches on Tuesday, the New York Times reports.

Tech Slips Into Surprising Slump

After a six-year boom ignited by the introduction of the iPhone in 2007, tech firms are in the unusual position of being laggards in the U.S. economy's recovery, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Re/Max Holdings Files for IPO

Re/Max Holdings Inc., a Denver franchiser of real estate brokerages, filed for an initial public offering as the nation’s property market rebounds and shares of housing-services companies surge, Bloomberg News reports.

A Restoration Fit for a Queen

After years of disrepair and various management and leaseholder changes, things are slowly taking shape on the iconic ocean liner Queen Mary, with improvements to help restore the ship to its 1930s glory, the Los Angeles Daily News reports.

Jane Cosmetics Revived, Revamped

Financier Lynn Tilton is a pro at buying distressed companies and whipping them into shape. She's worked especially hard on the Jane cosmetics brand, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Zillow Buys Real-Estate Website StreetEasy for $50 Million

Zillow Inc., operator of the largest real-estate website, agreed to acquire StreetEasy for $50 million in cash to expand its coverage, Bloomberg News reports.

Skechers Laces Up for Recovery

Skechers Inc. has reported profits in the last two quarters that exceed last year's total earnings, the Los Angeles Times reports in a company profile that also looks at the footwear maker's cautious roll out of a new apparel line.

New Twist on Crowdfunding for Startups

A pair of online platforms are offering a new twist on the usual crowdfunding model for small businesses, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Young and Rich Snap Up Tesla's Model S

Compared to other luxury sedans, Tesla sells the Model S to a much higher percentage of men and those buyers are, on average, younger and wealthier than those purchasing competing models, CNBC reports.

Small Firms Use Security Cameras to Boost Business

A handful of new technologies let store owners transform their existing security cameras and digital video recorders into tools for boosting business and sharpening their marketing efforts, the Wall Street Journal reports.

New Virus Targets Social Network

As social media has become increasingly influential in shaping reputations, hackers have used their computer skills to create and sell false endorsements that purport to come from users of Facebook, its photo-sharing app Instagram, Twitter, Google's YouTube, LinkedIn, and other popular websites, Reuters reports.

Morning Markets Mixed

In Monday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 7 points to 15,074. The Nasdaq was up 17 points to 3,619. The S&P 500 fell 1 point to 1,655

Santa Monica’s New Direction?

DEVELOPMENT: City mulls project for east of Promenade.

Santa Monica takes a new development direction with a proposed project east of the Third Street Promenade.

Hot-Oven Pizza to Grow by Degrees

Dining: Local chains plan to hit road to vie for bigger piece of pie.

The market for pizzas baked quickly in super-hot ovens heats up and local chains lay out expansion plans.

Raising Curtain on Change

Hollywood interests must let development play role in neighborhood’s future.

Chauncey M. Swalwell issues an open casting call for change in Hollywood’s growth as a neighborhood.

Taxis, Rideshares Both Seek Breaks

TRANSPORTATION: Cabbies fear apps have edge in fare fight.

App-driven ride services and taxi companies are still puzzling out a roadmap to share L.A.’s streets.

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Retailored

StyleSaint built online community then products

StyleSaint has refashioned the online retail model by creating a community of buyers before creating the products.

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Gambling Business Bets on Santa Monica Space

LEASE: Caesars Interactive division signs deal for top floor on Colorado Avenue.

An online and mobile gaming division of casino operator Caesars Entertainment Corp. in Reno, Nev., is preparing a large expansion in Santa Monica.

Data Bank

Calendar and Events

News of the Week

Last week’s major news from labusinessjournal.com and other sources

Furniture Maker Looks to Pull Up Chair to Nasdaq

Manufacturing: Nova hopes to leave over the counter for bigger board.

Shares of Commerce furniture manufacturer Nova Lifestyle Inc. could soon be traded on Nasdaq.

Station Sounds Out Success With Seasonal Tunes

RADIO: KPWR credits ‘summertime sensibility’ for prime audience.

Summer jams vaulted KPWR-FM (105.9) back to first place in the local radio ratings among 18- to 34-year-olds.

Shares of Garment Maker May Soon Be in Fashion

CLOTHING: Analysts back American Apparel despite disappointing quarter.

Rough quarter punishes American Apparel shares but analysts say the stock will wear well.

Non-Profit Loan Program Adds Up for Wells Fargo

Philanthropy: Bank’s corporate giving pumps up L.A. County’s numbers.

Soft-loan program helps Wells Fargo take the top spot among L.A. County’s biggest givers.

CEQA Reform May Make Matters Even Worse

Regulation: New rules might give more ammo to project opponents.

Business groups now fear that proposed “reforms” to California Environmental Quality Act will make it easier to hold up projects.

Results Are Another Giant Leap for MannKind

BIOTECH: Afrezza inhaler clears more hurdles on road to FDA approval.

Investors try to catch their breath as reports on MannKind’s inhalable insulin device send shares up then down.

Team Player

PR: Jimmy Blackman left City Hall and launched his own firm. Now he’s formed an unusual partnership with an established one.

In an unusual partnership, two public affairs and communications firms will share office space but not necessarily client lists.

Regional Report

News and notes from communities across Los Angeles County

Things to Do in Denver When You’re on Radio

L.A. public radio host Jesse Thorn had been thinking for some time about what it would feel like to give away 1,000 ice-cream cones.

Mall Has Tall Order for Christmas

Citadel hopes to top Grove in battle of towering fir trees.

Citadel Outlets looks to chop the Grove down to size by erecting the nation’s tallest Christmas tree this fall.

No Stop for Pop-Up Shop In Venice

Furniture design firm to keep doors open at shipping containers.

Design firm Ilan Dei Studio is shocked by the success of its electricity-free shop in a shipping container.

Gearing Up For Organic Ice Cream

Peddler’s Creamery bikes up batches, lets customers have a seat.

Peddler’s Creamery hopes to spin sales success out of its bicycle-churned ice cream.

Friday, August 16

Ex-Execs Plead Guilty in Vitesse Backdating Case

Two former top Vitesse Semiconductor Corp. executives have pleaded guilty in federal court to obstructing justice in connection with a stock backdating scheme.

L.A. Unemployment Climbs

Los Angeles County’s unemployment rate rose to 9.9 percent in July as county payrolls declined by 30,000 jobs, according to state figures released Friday.

L.A. Private Equity Firm to Take NTS Private

Engineering and testing-services firm National Technical Systems Inc. is being acquired for $267 million in cash by Los Angeles private equity firm Aurora Capital Group, the companies announced Friday.

MannKind Backer to Provide More Financing

Positive clinical trial results for MannKind Corp’s first product have made the company eligible for a second stage of financing from its new supporter, the company announced Friday.

MannKind, NTS Among Week’s Biggest Movers

The Los Angeles Business Journal’s index of largest local public companies fell for the week as investors reacted to disappointing earnings reports and the prospects of higher interest rates.

Markets Down

In Friday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed down 31 points to 15,081. The Nasdaq fell 3 points to 3,603. The S&P 500 dropped 5 points to 1,656. The LABJ Stock Index fell 1 point to 163.

Ken Howard Re-Elected SAG-Aftra President

Ken Howard has been re-elected national president of SAG-Aftra, Variety reports, easily defeating Esai Morales as his primary challenger in the first contest to lead performers union since last year’s merger of SAG and Aftra.

SpaceX Reusable Rocket Makes Horizontal Return

SpaceX has been sending its reusable Grasshopper soaring to greater altitudes in a series of test flights, but this week the Hawthorne private space firm had its prototype Falcon 9 launch vehicle perform a horizontal maneuver, Wired reports.

Annenberg Center Sets Inaugural Season

More than a decade in the making, the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts is expected to finally open its doors in Beverly Hills with a gala celebration this fall, the Los Angeles Times reports. Check out the Los Angeles Business Journal's earlier coverage.

Kiss Brings Football to Southland

The Arena Football League on Thursday announced it was awarding an expansion team to a group of individuals that includes Kiss band members Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley. The team, called the LA Kiss, will begin playing in March at the Honda Center in Anaheim, ESPN reports.

KPCC Fights Identity Crisis

KPCC, the biggest public radio station in Southern California, is grappling with an identity crisis amid programming changes and murmurings about its sustainability, The Wrap reports.

Garcetti Rejects DWP Salary Deal

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti on Thursday set the stage for a confrontation with the City Council, saying he would refuse to sign a proposed salary deal with the union representing Department of Water and Power workers, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Sony, Viacom Reach Tentative Streaming Deal

In a deal that may signal a new era of competition for entrenched cable and satellite companies, Viacom has tentatively agreed to let its popular cable channels — including Nickelodeon and MTV — be carried by an Internet TV service that Sony is creating, the New York Times reports.

Disney Promoting New Video Game

Walt Disney Co. is beating the drums for its new Infinity video game, which the New York Times reports is viewed as a make-or-break effort to turn around the company’s money-losing gaming and Web division.

Five Reasons OWN Is Up

After two-and-a-half years, the Oprah Winfrey Network is making money and paying back Discovery's investment into the venture. The Wrap looks at some of the reasons why.

CW Launches Seed Digital Studio

CW Seed launched Thursday as an ambitious effort to increase the CW television network's investment in original programming for digital platforms, the Los Angeles Times reports.

No One Has Much Influence in CBS Blackout

Bloomberg BusinessWeek asks, when a broadcast network disappears from the televisions of millions of cable subscribers, is there much difference?

Warren Buffett Adjusts Portfolio

Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway sharply reduced its holdings of Kraft Foods and Mondelez during the second quarter, USA Today reports.

Lewis Kornfeld, Ex-RadioShack President, Dies

Retired RadioShack President Lewis Kornfeld knew how to reach customers. He died this week at age 97, the Forth Worth Star-Telegram reports.

A Day With CAA's Real-Life 'Jerry Maguire'

Recently named one of the 10 most powerful people in hockey by Sports Illustrated, Pat Brisson keeps his clients happy the old-fashioned way: by working for them 24/7, the Hollywood Reporter says.

CIA Admits 'Area 51' Exists

After years of government denials, the CIA is acknowledging in newly declassified documents the existence of Area 51, the mysterious site in central Nevada that has spawned top-secret tools, weapons and not a few UFO conspiracies, USA Today reports.

Markets Up

In Friday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 13 points to 15,125. The Nasdaq was up less than 1 point to 3,619. The S&P 500 rose 1 point to 1,662.

DTS Cites Cautious Outlook for Consumer Electronics

DTS Inc. reported a better-than-expected second quarter, but the audio technology company but was cautious in its guidance based on prospects for lower consumer electronics spending.

Thursday, August 15

Port Traffic Climbs in Long Beach, Slips in L.A.

Cargo volumes through the Port of Long Beach climbed 7.6 percent in July compared with the same month last year, while the Port of Los Angeles traffic slipped about 1.5 percent.

LTC Chairman Andre Dimitriadis Dies

Andre C. Dimitriadis, founder and executive chairman of LTC Properties Inc., has died after a long battle with a chronic illness. He was 72.

Markets Decline

In Thursday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed down 225 points to 15,112. The Nasdaq dropped 63 points to 3,606. The S&P 500 fell 24 points to 1,661. The LABJ Stock Index fell more than 2 points to 164.

Moonfrye Launches Photo-Sharing App

The free Moonfrye app will allow people to customize their photos with themed filters, such as pirate or mermaid.

Tastemade Raises $10 Million

The 18-person company plans to use the funding to continue to build out its technology platform and grow its network.

Tease photo

Major Providers on Board for Fox Sports 1 Launch

Fox Sports 1 has signed carriage agreements with Time Warner Cable, DirecTV and Dish, ensuring that the new cable network will be available in the majority of pay-TV homes when it launches this Saturday, Variety reports.

Time Warner Cable Subscribers Sue over Blackout

Time Warner Cable customers filed a class-action lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court against the cable company over the prolonged blackout of CBS, Showtime, The Movie Channel and KCAL, and want refunds for the loss of the channels, the Hollywood Reporter says.

Wal-Mart Cuts Profit Outlook

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. on Thursday cut its annual profit and revenue outlook, with the world's largest retailer expecting a tough economy at home and abroad to continue to squeeze its lower-income shoppers through the rest of the year, the Associated Press reports. Retail analyst Howard Davidowitz tells Yahoo Finance’s Breakout blog that the earnings disaster exposes the collapsing economy more than Wal-Mart’s missteps.

Daniel Loeb Takes Stake in Disney

Daniel Loeb, the billionaire activist investor who has been trading barbs with Sony lately, has taken a $114-million stake in Walt Disney Co., the Hollywood Reporter says.

Sunset La Cienega Project Starts

Demolition began this week on vacant structures at the busy intersection of Sunset and La Cienega boulevards to make way for a long-delayed Sunset Strip complex, with upscale hotel, apartments, shops and restaurants, valued at more than $300 million, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Tower Project Exposes Gaps in L.A.'s Oversight

Community activists, not city planners, have been taking the lead in bringing concerns to light about a Hollywood seismic fault that could affect at least two high-rise developments, the Los Angeles Times reports.

L.A. OKs Watts ‘Urban Village'

The Los Angeles City Council voted Wednesday to create an "urban village" of shops, town homes, a park and gardens to replace the notorious Jordan Downs housing project in Watts, the Los Angeles Times reports.

USPS Revamps Priority Mail Service

The U.S. Postal Service on Wednesday made changes to its Priority Mail lineup, offering free insurance and tracking along with day-specific delivery in an effort to boost shipping revenue for the financially ailing agency, the Washington Post reports.

Publicis Buys Engauge

French advertising giant Publicis Groupe has acquired a small Ohio digital advertising firm, Engauge Marketing, whose roster of clients includes Coca-Cola and Cisco Systems, Ad Age reports.

Old Economies Rise as Growing Markets Begin to Falter

Economies in Japan and the United States are growing and Europe appears to be easing away from a recession, just as growth is slowing in Brazil, Russia, India and China, the New York Times reports.

Weather Channel Now Also Forecasts What You'll Buy

The Weather Channel knows the chance for rain in St. Louis on Friday and how humid Baltimore may get on Sunday. It now also knows when you're most likely to buy bug spray, which the Wall Street Journal reports is transforming the cable network into an operation that forecasts consumer behavior.

Markets Continue to Decline

In Thursday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 192 points to 15,146. The Nasdaq dropped 56 points to 3,614. The S&P 500 fell 22 points to 1,663.

Wednesday, August 14

Test Results Boost MannKind Shares

Shares of MannKind Corp. jumped nearly 11 percent after the inhalable insulin treatment maker said two long-waited clinical trials indicated that its inhaler helps diabetics control their condition.

Guthy-Renker Sells Solar Business

Santa Monica direct-marketing giant Guthy-Renker LLC has sold its solar energy marketing subsidiary, Paramount Solar, to one of its partners, SolarCity Corp., in a stock-and-cash deal valued at $120 million.

Sport Chalet Moves to Loss on Lower Sales

Sport Chalet Inc. reported a fiscal first-quarter loss Wednesday that badly missed analyst estimates, fueled by a decrease in sales and the closure of two underperforming stores.

Indexes Down

In Wednesday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed down 113 points to 15,338. The Nasdaq dropped 15 points to 3,667. The S&P 500 fell 9 points to 1,685. The LABJ Stock Index fell 1 point to 167.

Riot Games Partners With American Express

The New York credit card company announced this week that it has integrated its prepaid debit accounts with the reward system used in Riot Games' popular online title "League of Legends."

StyleSaint Raises Series A for Clothing Collection

The funding will go toward the Venice startup's clothing line, which launched earlier this month.

Studios Resolve China Tax Dispute

Major Hollywood studios have resolved a tax dispute in China that has held up hundreds of millions of box-office dollars since last year, the Los Angeles Times reports.

LAX Officials Defend Consultant Perks

Los Angeles Councilman Mike Bonin asked Los Angeles World Airports officials on Tuesday to consider lowering expense reimbursement rates for outside consultants and prodded them to take more steps to ensure consultants train city employees, the Los Angeles Daily News reports.

Garcetti Replaces Most of Airport Commission

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti on Tuesday announced his appointments to the Board of Airport Commissioners, with only one holdover from the Villaraigosa administration, the Los Angeles Business Journal reports.

San Onofre Closure Could Take Less Time Than Expected

Southern California Edison Co., by law, can spend up to 60 years to completely scrap its San Onofre nuclear plant near San Clemente, but less than 10 years is more realistic, lawmakers were told Tuesday, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Identity Theft Ring Busted in Glendale

A late afternoon traffic stop on Jan. 20 by Glendale police provided the thread that led to the unraveling of an identity theft ring that has stolen tens of thousands of dollars from unsuspecting Los Angeles area residents, the Los Angeles Daily News reports.

Two Charged in J.P. Morgan 'Whale' Trades

Two former JPMorgan Chase & Co. employees were charged with conspiracy for trying to conceal the size of the investment bank's $6 billion trading loss last year, authorities said in court papers unsealed Wednesday, the Associated Press reports.

Obamacare Prompting Businesses to Cut

Employers around the country, from fast-food franchises to colleges, told NBC News that they will be cutting workers' hours below 30 a week because they can't afford to offer the health insurance mandated by the federal Affordable Care Act.

Money Returns to Corporate Bonds

After a broad selloff in May and June, investors are pouring money back into corporate bonds and riskier types of debt, some with complex structures and favorable terms for issuers, the Wall Street Journal reports.

BlackBerry’s Patent Portfolio Ripe for Picking

BlackBerry’s continuing decline has left it with comparatively little to offer a potential acquirer – except intellectual property that could be worth up to $3 billion, All Things D reports.

Airlines Already Charging Higher Fares

The government claims it is putting its foot down on rising airfares and fees by blocking the latest airline merger of American Airlines and US Airways, but for fliers, it's already too late, the Associated Press reports.

Bizarre Beijing Rooftop Villa Ordered Torn Down

A strange and elaborate stone villa perched atop an apartment building in Beijing, constructed by businessman in the traditional Chinese medicine industry, has finally caught the attention of authorities who have ordered the structure be torn down, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Stocks Slip in Morning Trading

In Wednesday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 91 points to 15,360. The Nasdaq fell 10 points to 3,675. The S&P 500 fell 6 points to 1,688.

Tuesday, August 13

Garcetti Replaces Most of Airport Commission

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti on Tuesday announced his appointments to the Board of Airport Commissioners, with only one holdover from the Villaraigosa administration.

Wilcon to Acquire Freedom Dark Fiber Networks

Wilcon, a downtown L.A. regional fiber optic network and data center company, on Tuesday said it acquired a Marina Del Rey competitor, Freedom Dark Fiber Networks.

Broadway Financial Reports Loss

Broadway Financial Corp. again reported a quarterly loss as the struggling bank holding company continued to recover from the financial downturn.

PennyMac Mortgage Investment Trust to Sell Shares

PennyMac Mortgage Investment Trust plans to sell 11.3 million shares in a secondary public offering.

Nasdaq, Dow, S&P Up; LABJ Down

In Tuesday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed up 31 points to 15,451. The Nasdaq rose 14 points to 3,684. The S&P 500 rose 5 points to 1,694. The LABJ Stock Index fell less than 1 point to 168.

Disney Toxic Dumping Case Dismissed

A federal judge has dismissed a $1 billion environmental lawsuit against Walt Disney Co., which accused the studio of dumping cancer-causing toxins at its 50-acre Burbank film and TV production facility, The Wrap reports.

Feds Seek to Block Giant Airline Merger

The Justice Department today sued to block the merger of American Airlines and US Airways, a deal that would create the world’s largest airline, Reuters reports.

Ads: Customers May Pay for San Onofre Shutdown

Southern California Edison took out full-page ads in local newspapers, including the Business Journal, warning customers that shutting down the San Onofre Nuclear power plant may result in significant costs that the plant’s designers and insurers won’t pay for, Southern California Public Radio reports.

Report: Ticketmaster’s President to Leave

Live Nation Entertainment will oust Nathan Hubbard, the president of its Ticketmaster unit, in coming days as part of a revamping of the division, sources tell the New York Times.

Digital Domain Makes Executive Appointments

Seeking to assuage concerns about management stability at Digital Domain, the new owners of the struggling visual effects company announced promotions of two veteran executives, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Mexico Moves to Overhaul Oil Industry

Mexico's government has taken steps to end its 75-year-old monopoly on oil and gas production, potentially opening up some of the world's biggest remaining untapped oil reserves to private companies, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Will Musk’s Hyperloop Work?

After keeping the public in suspense for about a year, Elon Musk has revealed details of what he sees as a new, superfast mode of solar-powered transportation, Bloomberg News reports. But the Hyperloop may not be feasible, USA Today says.

Ad Groups Warn of Tax Deduction Threat

Ad industry lobbyists are alarmed about proposals in Congress that would affect the ability of businesses to expense advertising fees for tax purposes, Ad Age reports.

On-Campus Sports Camp Under Fire

Parents of Beverly Hills High students thought money paid to the Beverly Hills Sports Academy went to support the school's teams. But the on-campus sports camp actually is a for-profit business owned by Principal Carter Paysinger and operated by two other school employees, the Los Angeles Times reports.

SiriusXM Makes Deal with Piolín

After severing ties with Univision Radio, Spanish-language L.A. radio host Eddie 'Piolín' Sotelo is set to launch an entertainment channel on subscription satellite radio service SiriusXM this fall, the Los Angeles Times reports.

HD Antenna Sales Jump Amid CBS Blackout

The CBS blackout, which is affecting 3.2 million Time Warner Cable customers in Los Angeles, New York and Dallas, has created a spike in high-definition antennas in those markets at RadioShack, Ad Age reports.

If It's Tuesday, Best Buy Must Be Firing People

Mid-week layoffs, which have become known as Termination Tuesdays, may help struggling electronics retail giant Best Buy contain its image in the media, Time reports.

Markets Decline

In Tuesday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 41 points to 15,378. The Nasdaq fell 7 points to 3,663. The S&P 500 fell 3 points to 1,687.

Monday, August 12

American Apparel Reports Higher Sales, Larger Loss

American Apparel Inc. on Monday reported better sales and operating results in the second quarter, but its net loss deepened, largely due to refinancing-related costs.

Marlin Equity Acquires Health Care Software Firm

Hermosa Beach investment firm Marlin Equity Partners on Monday announced that it has acquired 6N Systems, its third tech deal in a month and the second in the health care sector.

Rexford Industrial Makes Valley Acquisitions

Brentwood's Rexford Industrial Realty Inc. has added to its San Fernando Valley-area portfolio with a pair of industrial purchases worth about $14 million.

L.A. Retailer Walter Diamond Dies

Walter Diamond, co-founder of local appliance and hardware retailer Snyder Diamond, has died of complications of lymphoma. He was 85.

Nasdaq Gains; Dow, S&P LABJ Decline

In Monday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed down 6 points to 15,420. The Nasdaq rose 10 points to 3,670. The S&P 500 fell 2 points to 1,689. The LABJ Stock Index fell 1 point 168.

Entangled Media Raises $3.5 Million

The Santa Monica company announced Monday morning that it has taken its first round of institutional investment.

Murdock Boosts Offer to Take Dole Private

Dole Food Co. this morning said it has agreed to a higher takeover offer from Chairman David Murdock in a deal that now values the Westlake Village fresh fruit and vegetable producer and marketer at $1.21 billion, Bloomberg News reports.

BlackBerry Considers Selling Itself

The board of BlackBerry Ltd. has formed a special committee to explore strategic alternatives that could include a sale of the company, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Ticketmaster Wants in on Scalping

The Wall Street Journal reports that Live Nation Entertainment's Ticketmaster subsidiary has a new strategy for dealing with its ticket-scalping enemies: If you can't beat 'em, join 'em.

New Line Will Only Get Travelers Close to LAX

Metro light rail's $2.06-billion north-south Crenshaw Line will pass 1.5 miles east of Los Angeles International airport terminals when it opens in 2019. Depending on how a series of design and financing issues are resolved, it might not have an LAX stop for up to nine more years, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Bullet Train Timetable Runs Off Rails

Start of construction on the California bullet train, which was awarded stimulus funding three years ago by the Obama administration, is slipping past already-delayed target dates, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Musk to Share Plans for High-Speed Travel

Serial tech entrepreneur Elon Musk has been dropping hints about his ideas for a "Hyperloop" system for more than a year and is poised to reveal design plans later today, CNBC reports.

Blvd6200 Project Bypassed Seismic Review

A sprawling $200-million commercial and residential development under construction next to the Pantages Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard was approved by city officials without a seismic evaluation, even though it sits next to an active earthquake fault, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Rich Are Saving Cash at a Record Pace

Since the financial crisis, the wealthy have become the nation's top cash hoarders, filling up deposit accounts and money markets at a rapid clip, CNBC reports.

Another Super-Cheap Airline Possibly in Works

Phoenix private equity firm Indigo Partners, which turned around Spirit Airlines, reportedly is negotiating to buy Denver’s Frontier Airlines with an eye to converting it into an ultra-cheap carrier, the Los Angeles Times reports.

NBC Acquires Cell Phone Video Streamer

Betting that streaming live phone video will be the next trend in covering breaking news, NBC News on Monday announced the purchase of Web app Stringwire, The Wrap reports.

Smartphones Expose Traditional Camera Shortcomings

For camera makers, there's precious little to smile about these days. Smartphones are killing off the once-core business of compact digital cameras and hopes that high-end models would make up the shortfall now appear misplaced, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Markets Mixed This Morning

In Monday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 7 points to 15,433. The Nasdaq rose 11 points to 3,671. The S&P 500 was down less than 1 point to 1,691.

Big Score for Borrowers?

ZestFinance’s ratings could boost underbanked

ZestFinance’s founder hopes its credit score ratings do a number on an industry he claims is outdated.

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NEURORECOVERY TECHNOLOGIES INC.

Special Report: Innovation / Tech Transfer

Neurorecovery Technologies is developing an implantable spinal cord neuromodulator to aid paralyzed people.

EPETRI INC.

Special Report: Innovation / Tech Transfer

Epetri is developing a biomedical imaging system that can stream high-resolution microscopic images of growing cell cultures directly out of the incubator.

ARMAGEN TECHNOLOGIES INC.

Special Report: Innovation / Tech Transfer

Armagen Technologies is developing enzyme replacement therapies for Hurler and Hunter syndromes, two rare diseases.

LYXIA CORP.

Special Report: Innovation / Tech Transfer

Lyxia makes crude oil from microalgae without feeding it sugar.

IMAGINAB INC.

Special Report: Innovation / Tech Transfer

ImaginAb is developing new ways of imaging metastatic prostate, pancreatic and ovarian cancers that aim to give the oncologist a better handle on the extent of disease to improve treatment decisions.

L-NUTRA

Special Report: Innovation / Tech Transfer

L-Nutra is developing medicinal food for cancer treatment and anti-aging uses.

ARMORWAY INC.

Special Report: Innovation / Tech Transfer:

Armor software uses analytics to plan security resource allocation to mitigate risk at optimum cost.

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Spinning Into Gold

Special Report: Innovation / Tech Transfer

From a security software maker to the developer of an implantable spinal cord neuromodulator, the Business Journal highlights seven spun-out ventures looking to ride the lab coattails of USC, UCLA and Caltech

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Solar Feels Heat From State Fee

ENERGY: Utilities say proposed charge needed to offset losses.

Solar panel installers are steamed that utilities are pointing at their customers to justify a proposed $10 per household fee.

Edison CEO Says Nuclear Option Still on the Table

Even after the fiasco that led to the permanent shutdown of his company’s San Onofre nuclear power plant, Edison International Chief Executive Theodore Craver is willing to go nuclear again.

Making Port Work for L.A.

TRADE: More jobs across variety of sectors would help shore up facility’s value.

Port of L.A. Executive Director Geraldine Knatz says the facility is not coasting when it comes to creating seaside jobs.

Compton Deal Sustains Industrial Pickup Pace

ACQUISITION: $14 million property among 800-plus sold in L.A. this year.

The sale last month of a 152,000-square-foot Compton industrial building, fully leased to Kroger Co.’s Ralphs and Food4Less divisions, was yet another spark in a particularly hot market.

Data Bank

Calendar and Events

News of the Week

Last week’s major news from labusinessjournal.com and other sources

D.C. Firm Makes Power Play for Midwest Duo

EMPLOYMENT: Buckley picks up Dykema pair for Santa Monica office.

BuckleySandler LLP is only four years old, but the upstart Washington, D.C., firm has landed two heavy hitters in its Santa Monica office with the addition of Richard Gottlieb and Fredrick Levin from Detroit’s Dykema Gossett PLLC.

Yoga Mat Maker Stands Firmer After Acquisition

FITNESS: Manduka folds Yogitoes nonslip towels into product line.

For those who practice yoga regularly – particularly sweat-inducing hot yoga – absorbent, nonslip towels that can be spread over slick yoga mats have become an attractive accessory.

Brand Builder Makes Name With More Offerings

MARKETING: Icon Blue grows business, staff after expanding product line.

Icon Blue is getting its name out there by expanding the number of items it makes for clients.

Wig Maker Keeps Things Fair With Blond Focus

BEAUTY: Follea goes after roots of knockoffs with serial-numbered products.

High-end wig maker Follea doesn’t split hairs when it comes to defending its China-manufactured products.

Wall Street Doesn’t Dig Australian Mining Woes

ENGINEERING: Slowdown in projects and issues back in U.S. drop Aecom stock.

Slowdown in Australian mining hits Aecom’s stock down under.

Blurred Lines

HEALTH CARE: SEC and FDA concerns leave future fuzzy for medical device maker Imaging3 as it leaves bankruptcy.

Medical device maker Imaging3’s prognosis looks hazy with looming SEC and FDA issues.

Regional Report

News and notes from communities across Los Angeles County

Bean There, Done That

Pam Mizuno was excited to be named one of Ernst & Young’s Earthwatch Ambassadors.

Cool Treat Puts Calories on Ice

Duo’s Chilly Ribbons shop to introduce Taiwanese ‘shaved snow’ to SoCal.

Local entrepreneurs hope dessert lovers aren’t too cool to try their “shaved snow” treat.

New Spin On Exercising

Amenzone gym to roll into Los Angeles with focus on car tire-based routines.

Amenzone hopes to get a big bounce from its use of car tires as exercise tools.

Gold Shops Could Lose L.A. Luster

METALS: City Council mulls restrictions on new stores.

City of Los Angeles ponders restrictions that could take the shine off new cash-for-gold shops.

Some Actors Look to Recast Merger

ENTERTAINMENT: SAG-Aftra deal plays big role in union race.

Actors opposed to last year’s SAG-Aftra merger look to stage a takeover of the combined union.

Friday, August 9

Pebblebrook Hotel Trust Acquires Redbury

Mondrian Hotel owner Pebblebrook Hotel Trust announced that it has acquired Hollywood’s boutique Redbury Hotel from CIM Group for $34 million.

Disney Gets Win in Marvel Case

A federal appeals court has ruled that Walt Disney Co.'s Marvel Entertainment subsidiary does indeed of some of the company’s most popular superheroes, including the Incredible Hulk and Spider-Man.

Tutor Perini Moves to Profit

Tutor Perini Corp. swung to a profit in the second quarter, but the results still fell short of Wall Street forecasts.

MannKind Widens Quarterly Loss

MannKind Corp. late Friday said that its loss widened in the second quarter, which a year earlier included a significant one-time gain.

Capstone, U.S. Auto Parts Among Week’s Biggest Movers

The Los Angeles Business Journal’s index of largest local public companies fell for the week.

Markets Decline

In Friday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed down 73 points to 15,425. The Nasdaq lost 9 points to 3,660. The S&P 500 dropped 6 points to 1,691. The LABJ Stock Index fell 1 point 169.

Korean Pop Museum Coming to Koreatown

SM Entertainment, largely credited with the conception of K-Pop in the 1990s, is planning to open a museum in L.A.’s Koreatown documenting the rise of Psy and other stars of the musical genre, the Hollywood Reporter says.

Piracy Up Amid Time Warner Cable's CBS Blackout

Time Warner Cable's CBS blackout has forced TV fans to find other ways to watch their favorite shows, including downloading them illegally, the Hollywood Reporter says.

Condo Conversions Return to L.A.

Apartment building owners in Los Angeles and throughout the state are once again converting to condos, though not at the torrid pace of 2007, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Lions Gate Chief Enters Stallone-Willis Tiff

Lions Gate CEO Jon Feltheimer implied to analysts Friday that despite some intemperate comments from Sylvester Stallone, it may be too early to count Bruce Willis out of "The Expendables 3," The Wrap reports.

Report: Wildfires Getting Worse Due to Climate Change

From early butterflies to more vicious wildfires, a revised report documents how a warming California is impacting the environment, wildlife and people, Southern California Public Radio reports.

How New Law Could Change Hollywood Crowd-Funding

The Hollywood Reporter looks at a new measure that — unlike Kickstarter — could give filmmakers access to $300 billion from regular Joes with net worth over $1 million who can own part of the movies they fund.

Oprah Says She Was Denied Service Due to Race

Media mogul Oprah Winfrey says she had a recent racist encounter while shopping in Switzerland — and the national tourist office and the shop owner have apologized, Today.com reports.

Carlos Slim Makes Move for KPN

Billionaire Carlos Slim's Mexican telecommunications firm America Movil has increased its efforts to build up a long-term presence in Europe, the Wall Street Journal reports.

How 'Pretty Little Liars' Became a Top Show on Twitter

More and more networks are finding the value in the open communication that social media platforms facilitate — and some of the numbers are impressive, The Wrap reports.

Investors Pull Money From Mutual Funds

The Wall Street Journal reports that long-term mutual funds fell by $4.48 billion in a week as investors pulled money from domestic stock funds and bonds, according to the Investment Company Institute.

Hunting for the Real Pink Panthers

A network of criminals dubbed the Pink Panthers is believed to have pulled off some of the most brazen diamond heists in history, with more than $100 million worth of precious gems stolen in just the past month, CNBC reports.

Value of Taxi Medallions Soars

One of the best-performing investments over the last year hasn’t come from the stock market or Wall Street – but rather the right to drive New York City’s famously gaudy yellow taxis, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Markets Down

In Friday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 140 points to 15,358. The Nasdaq fell 19 points to 3,650. The S&P 500 dropped 11 points to 1,686.

Thursday, August 8

Lions Gate Swings to Profit

Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. on Thursday said it moved to a fiscal first-quarter profit from a year-ago loss, boosted by home entertainment sales and revenue from TV shows such as "Mad Men.”

Herbalife Gets OK to Expand in China

Herbalife Ltd announced Thursday that China had granted permission for the company to expand its direct-selling nutritional supplement business to Yunnan province.

Mixed Results for PennyMac Companies

In its first earnings report since a May IPO, PennyMac Financial Services reported disappointing profit figures but beat analysts’ revenue estimates. Separately, PennyMac Mortgage Investment Trust reported higher second-quarter profit and revenue, citing additional investments in distressed debt and growth in its lending business.

Dow, Nasdaq, S&P Rise; LABJ Flat

In Thursday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed up 28 points to 15,498. The Nasdaq gained 15 points to 3,669. The S&P 500 rose 7 points to 1,697. The LABJ Stock Index was unchanged at 170.

Boingo Earnings Beat Expectations

This is the second straight quarter that Boingo has exceeded expectations, giving the company a needed boost after suffering last year from the proliferation of free Wi-Fi hot spots.

Hilton Signs Up Banks for IPO

Hilton Worldwide Inc. is making preparations for a return to the public markets, the Wall Street Journal reports. The-then Beverly Hills company was taken private by Blackstone Group LP in 2007 for more than $18 billion in the hotel industry's largest-ever private-equity buyout.

Univision's Morning Show Is Out-Growing the Big Three

The Spanish-language "Despierta America" grew viewership by 26 percent this year while English-Language morning shows "Today," "Good Morning America” and “CBS This Morning'” are flat or down, The Wrap reports.

Live Nation to Expand Beverly Hills HQ

Live Nation Inc., the world's largest concert promoter, will expand its Beverly Hills headquarters into the building next door, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Obama’s L.A. Trip Included Dinner with Katzenberg

Variety reports that after President Obama appeared on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” this week, he dined alone at the Woodland Hills Hilton with DreamWorks Chief Executive Jeffrey Katzenberg, among the most prolific of all Democratic donors.

Congress Wins Relief on Obamacare Subsidies

Congress has obtained some partial relief for lawmakers and their staffs from the Obamacare health reforms that it passed and subjected itself to three years ago, Reuters reports.

Tesla and Musk Fulfill Wall Street’s Need for a Hero

Tesla has become the feel-good stock story of the year, with the stock up more than 360 percent in one year. The market is in the midst of a love fest for founder Elon Musk, showing how Wall Street really needs a hero right now, says Yahoo Finance's Daily Ticker.

Promotions Help Same-Store Sales Rise

A group of large U.S. retailers reported higher sales for July, Reuters reports, but had to resort to bargains to lure shoppers who are still careful in their spending while the job market continues its slow recovery.

Billionaires Take Sides Over Herbalife

The Wall Street Journal looks at how William Ackman's big short on Herbalife Ltd. drew in three of his fellow billionaires: Carl Icahn, George Soros and Daniel Loeb, all of whom took the other side of the bet.

JPMorgan Reveals Criminal, Civil Inquiries

For the first time, JPMorgan Chase has disclosed it faces a criminal and civil investigation in California and Philadelphia into whether it sold shoddy mortgage securities to investors in the run-up to the financial crisis, the New York Times reports.

Friendly Deals Get Testier

Friendly deals and hostile takeovers have been part of the Wall Street deal landscape for decades. But recently a hybrid is emerging in which friendly deals face hostility from shareholders demanding more money, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Probe Targets Firms that Process Payments for Online Lenders

The Justice Department is targeting banks that service a broad range of what it considers questionable financial ventures, including online payday lenders, the Wall Street Journal reports.

'Deep Throat' Owners Can't Stop 'Lovelace'

The Hollywood Reporter says that Weinstein Co.’s new Linda Lovelace movie can open as planned this weekend despite a copyright lawsuit from the original makers of the 1970s porn classic "Deep Throat," a federal judge has ruled.

Publisher: NY Times Isn’t for Sale

After a week in which both the Boston Globe and Washington Post were purchased, the publisher of The New York Times — the nation’s last major newspaper run by a family — emphatically declared Wednesday night that his publication was not for sale, the Times reports.

Markets Mixed This Morning

In Thursday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average fell 37 points to 15,433. The Nasdaq was up 7 points to 3,661. The S&P 500 was down less than 1 point to 1,690.

Wednesday, August 7

Live Nation Gains on Stronger Concert Business

Shares of Live Nation Entertainment Inc. jumped 12 percent on Wednesday, a day after the concert promoter and ticket seller reported higher concert attendance and that the sale of one of its venues had significantly boosted second-quarter profit.

RealD Swings to Loss

A tough season at the box office and fewer 3-D releases took a toll on RealD Inc. of Beverly Hills, which swung to a loss in its fiscal first quarter.

Investment Banker Gordon Gregory Dies

Gordon Gregory, founder of Sherman Oaks investment bank Mosaic Capital LLC and co-founder of professional networking group ProVisors, has died of complications from cancer. He was 59.

Carlyle Continues to Reduce Stake in Wesco

Carlyle Group continues to sell shares of Valencia aerospace parts supplier Wesco Aircraft Holdings Inc., according to regulatory filings.

Amgen Reportedly Raises Bid for Onyx

Amgen Inc. may finally acquire Onyx Inc. after the Thousand Oaks company raised its bid for the cancer drug developer, according to media reports.

PowerOne to Buy Garden Grove Competitor

PowerOne Corp., a Chicago company that provides discounted electricity to commercial customers, announced that it would buy Power Equity Inc., a smaller Garden Grove competitor it has used as a contractor in the past

Demand Media Revenue Grows, Traffic Slows

Santa Monica's Demand Media on Wednesday reported second quarter net income of $1.1 million, up from $100,000 during the same period last year.

J2 Global Reports Revenue Growth

J2's bottom line is starting to reflect the company's attempt to diversify from an e-fax business to a cloud technology and digital media company.

LABJ Gains; Dow, Nasdaq, S&P Fall

In Wednesday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed down 48 points to 15,471. The Nasdaq dropped 12 points to 3,654. The S&P 500 fell 6 points to 1,691. The LABJ Stock Index gained more than 1 point to 170.

Freddie Mac Sees $5 Billion Profit

Freddie Mac reported a $5 billion profit during the second quarter, the second-largest quarterly profit in the company's history, the Wall Street Journal reports. The Associated Press looks at how homebuyers could feel the pinch if Congress follows through on plans to shut down Freddie and its sister mortgage guarantee giant, Fannie Mae.

Amber Alert Startled Many

A statewide Amber Alert – that startled or awakened many cell phone customers about 11 p.m. Monday – remained in effect Wednesday morning for two San Diego children who may have been abducted by a neighbor who allegedly killed their mother, the Los Angeles Times reports. The SF Gate looks at how many Californians found out for the first time late Monday that their phones were equipped with a means for government agencies to notify them about emergencies.

The Enduring Beauty of Bundled TV

Analysts say there’s “zero chance” that content producers like CBS will abandon the bundled-channel model that has proved so lucrative for so many years. The bigger question, according to Bloomberg BusinessWeek, is whether federal regulators now will get involved in the ongoing CBS-Time Warner Cable dispute.

Airport Board Delays Rewarding Contracts

The Los Angeles Board of Airport Commissioners failed to approve nearly $200 million in construction management contracts Tuesday, the Daily Breeze reports, as a City Council member moved to begin a review of the city's procedures for how it selects and retains outside airport consultants.

Tesla Investors Look Far Into the Future

Tesla Motors Chief Executive Elon Musk doesn't run his Silicon Valley electric car maker by traditional auto industry rules, and investors are so far rewarding him by putting a value on the company that defies easy comparisons, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Small Paper Has Big Voice

Beverly Hills might be best known for pampered TV housewives and refined shopping on Rodeo Drive. But as the Los Angeles Times reports, it's also the home of bare-knuckle politics and a publisher who tries to influence events, both from behind the scenes and in the news pages of his newspaper, the Courier.

How Tom Rothman Could Lure Film Investors to Sony

The new TriStar chief's reputation for fiscal conservatism could calm potential financiers concerned about the studio's profitability, the Hollywood Reporter says.

Eminent Domain Considered for Underwater Mortgages

El Monte is considering a novel and controversial plan to take over underwater mortgages using its eminent domain power — an idea highly unpopular in the financial industry but backed by anti-Wall Street groups, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Many New Jobs Part Time and Low-Paying

U.S. employers added a disappointing 162,000 jobs in July, but some economists are even more concerned about the types of jobs the economy is generating, USA Today reports.

Big Banks Warm to Small Businesses

It has become a familiar refrain from capital-starved small business owners over the past few years — the notion that “banks just aren’t lending.” But the Washington Post reports that data released in the past week point to relaxed credit standards and more money flowing into small companies.

Wall Street Drops for Third Day on Fed Concerns

Major stock indexes fell for a third straight day on Wednesday, as concerns grew over the longevity of the Federal Reserve's stimulus policy, which has been widely credited with fueling the market's gains this year, Reuters reports.

Markets Continue to Slide

In Wednesday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 65 points to 15,454. The Nasdaq fell 23 points to 3,643. The S&P 500 fell 10 points to 1,688.

Tuesday, August 6

Ducommun Rises on Strong Earnings

Shares of Ducommun Inc. jumped more than 13 percent on Tuesday, a day after the aerospace components maker reported better-than-expected second-quarter profit.

Fullscreen Sued Over Music Royalties

The National Music Publishers' Association, a trade group based in Washington, D.C., brought a copyright infringement claim against Culver City's Fullscreen, alleging that the company's YouTube artists used unlicensed music in their online videos.

ESPN, Theme Parks Offset Disney’s Box-Office Weakness

Walt Disney Co. on Tuesday said that profit rose slightly in the fiscal third-quarter, as higher revenue at its theme parks and its ESPN networks offset losses at its film studio unit.

Aecom Plunges on Earnings Outlook

Share of Aecom Technology Corp. dropped 17 percent on Tuesday after the professional technical services company cut its full-year earnings guidance.

ReachLocal Signs Yelp Deal

Online advertising services provider ReachLocal reported a smaller-than expected second-quarter loss and announced a partnership with review site Yelp Inc.

Markets Drop

In Tuesday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed down 93 points to 15,519. The Nasdaq fell 27 points to 3,666. The S&P 500 fell 10 points to 1,697. The LABJ Stock Index fell 1 point to 168.

Demand Launches EHow Now for Instant Help

The platform is an expansion of Demand's eHow business, which features how-to articles and videos on everything from cooking a turkey to changing a headlight.

Cornerstone Earnings a Near Miss

The Santa Monica company, which develops talent management and human resources software, reported a net loss of $8.7 million (17 cents a share) for the quarter ended June 30.

Tech Pioneer Bezos Turns Media Baron

Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon.com Inc. and soon to be new owner of the Washington Post, is considered a chief executive who refuses to bow to Wall Street's quarterly profit demands, Reuters reports. The New Republic considers whether Bezos is buying the Post more for its delivery capacity than its content; check out the Business Journal’s earlier coverage of Amazon Fresh.

JetBlue to Add Lie-Flat Seats

JetBlue, which has only offered economy seats, now says it can beat competitors in luring business-class passengers with prime seating on cross-country flights, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Sony Needs a New Plan

Sony Corp.'s rejection of hedge fund manager Dan Loeb's call for a partial listing of its entertainment unit might seem fair enough, but a closer look at the board's reasons for rejecting the proposal are harder to swallow, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Lettuce Prices Soar on Shortage

Heavy rains and persistent heat in the Eastern U.S. have devastated that region's lettuce crop. The Los Angeles Times reports that buyers are turning to America's salad bowl: California.

Moonves: Time Warner Cable Letter an 'Empty Gesture'

CBS Chief Executive Les Moonves fired back at Time Warner Cable on Tuesday, using unusually harsh language to reject the cable company's overture in their dispute over broadcasting fees, CNBC reports.

Obama Administration Vetoes Apple Ban

The Obama administration vetoed a U.S. trade body's ban on the sale of some Apple iPhones and iPads, a rare move that the Wall Street Journal says upends a legal victory for smartphone rival Samsung Electronics.

Study Links TV Viewership and Twitter Conversations

A first-of-its-kind study by Nielsen has affirmed what nearly everyone in the television industry already suspected: Twitter conversations sometimes do cause people to turn on the TV, the New York Times reports.

Americans With Best Credit in Decades Drive U.S. Economy

Household net worth soared to a record high in the first quarter, Federal Reserve data show, with the ratio relating consumer debt to income the lowest in 33 years, Bloomberg News reports.

Zuckerberg Speaks Out on Immigration Reform

Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg made a high-profile case for immigration reform Monday night, speaking publicly for the first time on an issue he has worked on behind the scenes for months. And it's more about easing the way for H-1B visas and engineers for tech firms, the San Jose Mercury News reports.

Hybrid Vehicles in State Have Tripled

With gas prices hovering near $4 a gallon for the past several years, the appetite for hybrid vehicles in California has tripled since 2008 according to state statistics, the Sacramento Bee reports.

Marilyn Monroe’s Marketing Star Still Shines

More than 50 years after her death, Marilyn Monroe still attracts attention and sales. The New York Times describes some of the latest campaigns.

Fancy a Game of… Segway Polo?

Seen as a sport for the upper classes, polo has often had a stuffy reputation. But CNBC reports that a London-based technology consultant is looking to introduce the British to Segway polo, a geeky, revamped form of the game developed by California's tech set.

Markets Decline

In Tuesday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 119 points to 15,492. The Nasdaq fell 33 points to 3,695. The S&P 500 fell 12 points to 1,695.

Monday, August 5

Edison Buys Solar Power Company

Edison International said Monday that it has acquired Chicago commercial rooftop solar provider SoCore Energy LLC.

Macerich’s Quarter Exceeds Expectations

Macerich Co. reported better-than-expected second quarter revenue and adjusted profit late Monday as the real estate investment trust benefited from higher sales by tenants and the sale of five non-core malls in smaller markets.

Court Decision Favors Advocates of Adult Film Condom Use

A federal judge has allowed representatives from the AIDS Healthcare Foundation to remain as parties in the legal challenge to a countywide measure requiring condom usage in adult film productions.

Nasdaq Rises; S&P, Dow Fall

In Monday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed down 46 points to 15,612. The Nasdaq rose 3 points to 3,693. The S&P 500 fell 3 points to 1,707. The LABJ Stock Index fell 1 point to 169.

Ouya Offers Store Credit to Unhappy Backers

Ouya, the Santa Monica company behind the console of the same name, sent an email apology over the weekend to people who crowdfunded the device on Kickstarter or pre-ordered it.

Time Warner-CBS Blackout May Last Until September

Millions of Time Warner Cable subscribers in Los Angeles and other cities could be without CBS Corp programming for several weeks as the two companies appear no closer to settling a fee dispute, analysts tell Reuters.

Redondo Beach Studies Pier Makeover

Redondo Beach is about to launch an environmental review of a project to revitalize its harbor and pier area with restaurants, shops and a boutique hotel. But the Los Angeles Times reports that not everyone in town is enthusiastic about the proposed $300-million makeover. Also, check out the Los Angeles Business Journal’s earlier coverage of the plan.

ABC Bets on Marvel Heroes for New Season

Walt Disney Co. is hoping that Marvel’s characters will save the day at its ABC television network, same as they rescued the company’s film studio, Bloomberg News reports.

Ackman Goes to SEC in Latest Herbalife Move

Bill Ackman is taking his campaign against Herbalife to a new level, with sources telling CNBC that the hedge fund manager has filed a complaint with regulators against George Soros, who last week made a big investment in the nutritional supplement maker

Edison Aims to Power Through Troubles

Southern California Edison parent Edison International is overhauling its operations in the wake of the bankruptcy of a subsidiary and the closure of the San Onofre nuclear power plant, the Los Angeles Times reports in a company profile.

Pension Woes Plaguing the Nation

Detroit is not alone. A CNBC analysis of more than 120 of the nation's largest state and local pension plans finds they face a wide range of burdens as their aging workforces near retirement.

Service Jobs Grow in U.S.

The Institute for Supply Management says service industries in the U.S. expanded in July at the fastest pace in five months, Bloomberg News reports.

Westfield Targeted over Prop. 13 Benefits

A coalition of labor groups and anti-poverty organizations are focusing on shopping mall giant Westfield, one of L.A.’s most prominent real estate operations, in a new campaign to highlight business property tax breaks tied to Proposition 13, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Jackson Family Lawsuit a Witness Gold Mine

Wrongful-death suit means lots of expert medical and business testimony. And that means each side pays big bucks to those who take the stand, especially in the Michael Jackson wrongful-death case, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Robotic Sign Wavers Grab Attention

Automated mannequins are the newest breed of sign spinners who promote all manner of businesses, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Old-School Ad Execs Sweating

Once home to creative types in the mold of Don Draper and "Mad Men," Madison Avenue is increasingly a bastion of geeks: computer programmers, data heads and quantitative analysts, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Markets Mixed This Morning

In Monday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 40 points to 15,619. The Nasdaq rose 3 points to 3,692. The S&P 500 fell 1 point to 1,708.

Public Works, Mixed Use Build Up Contractors

CONSTRUCTION: LAX’s terminal project fuels billings for Walsh Group.

Public works and mixed-use projects have helped rebuild the billings of general contractors.

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Bank Fund Puts Its Money Where Mouths Are

PHILANTHROPY: Wilshire State and UCLA team on dental care program.

The UCLA School of Dentistry and Koreatown’s Wilshire State Bank have formed an unusual partnership to provide better dental care to underserved residents in and around downtown Los Angeles.

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Out of the Box

Apparel: Winnie & Kat unlocks multilevel marketing model for its ‘stylists’ with use of in-house trunk shows.

Clothing company Winnie & Kat unpacks in-home trunk shows as its version of multilevel marketing.

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Latino Channels’ Accent on English

TV: Mun2, NuvoTV craft content with eye on younger viewers.

Cable channel Mun2 hopes a bilingual approach to content speaks to young Latino viewers.

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South Korea Holds Lawyer Suspected of Fraud

LAW: Immigration attorney drew money from green-card hopefuls.

South Korea arrests L.A. immigration attorney in alleged investment fraud involving green-card program. (Sidebar: Other EB-5 investment projects have collapsed from legal trouble. Page 42.)

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Postproduction Company Forges Links to Reality

TV: Margarita Mix taps new fiber optics network to land work in genre.

Recent upgrades at the Margarita Mix postproduction house have brought a bevy of reality TV business through the door.

Billionaire’s Boat Makes Big Splash

Rick Caruso looks to anchor megayacht by Newport Beach.

Rick Caruso looks to anchor megayacht by Newport Beach.

Early Education Will Work for L.A.

OP-ED

Early classroom focus will work to develop skilled employees, writes David Crippens

Faulty Connection

OP-ED: Tech companies are not guaranteed to click with all depressed communities.

Kofi Sefa-Boakye cautions that Silicon Valley-type tech firms don’t click with all cities.

Developer Sold on Glendale Shopping Complex

ACQUISITION: Cypress pays $50 million in area’s highest retail deal of year.

A shopping center across the street from Glendale’s successful outdoor mall Americana at Brand has sold for $50 million in one of Los Angeles County’s largest retail sales this year.

Sporting Goods Chain’s Shares Take Bad Bounce

RETAIL: Big 5’s otherwise strong quarter fails to match expectations.

Investors fear sporting goods chain Big 5 may have dropped the ball in the second quarter despite healthy profits.

Lots and Lots of ‘Bad’ Bets

The final season of AMC’s cult TV series “Breaking Bad” returns later this month with many questions to be answered and fates revealed.

Food Truck Owner In High Gear

Daniel Shemtob plans to serve up second sit-down restaurant.

Opening a second sit-down restaurant now drives Lime Truck owner Daniel Shemtob.

On Board With Games

Pair of partners roll dice on special theme for Glendale café.

Terry Chiu and Robert Cron make play for board-game enthusiasts with their planned café.

Online Magazine Platform Turns Page on CEO

INTERNET: Matt Edelman to take advisory role as Glossi pursues new chief.

Online magazine platform Glossi shuts the book on Matt Edelman’s term as chief executive.

Parking Company Wants Break on City Bidding

GOVERNMENT: Operator facing loss of L.A. facilities seeks do-over on process.

Parking contractor has lots to lose as city plans to bring in different facility management.

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Banks Break Out Their Checkbooks To Buy Up Rivals

Local lenders sink their money into mergers in their own industry.

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Data Bank

Calendar and Events

News of the Week

Last week’s major news from labusinessjournal.com and other sources

Regional Report

News and notes from communities across Los Angeles County

What Kind of Game Are They Playing?

Riot scores athlete visas to field top names for ‘e-sports’ tourney.

Riot Games looks to score more mainstream interest for “e-sports” with its Staples Center tournament.

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Friday, August 2

CBS, Showtime Go Dark on Time Warner

The CBS broadcast network and Showtime premium cable channel have gone dark for Time Warner Cable subscribers in Los Angeles.

Thomas Properties Reports Loss

Thomas Properties Group announced a second-quarter net loss and said that it had exercised an option to buy out a long-time joint venture that owns downtown’s City National Plaza and some out-of-state properties.

Local Layoffs to Follow Sale of Intuit Unit

The sale of the financial services division of Intuit Inc. to a private equity firm will result in layoffs of 65 workers in Woodland Hills, the company said.

Maker Studios Launches Geek Channel Polaris

Formerly called Game Station, the network has been re-launched to expand from its video game roots.

Activision, Big 5 Among Week’s Biggest Movers

The Los Angeles Business Journal’s index of largest local public companies closed up for the week.

Markets Rise

In Friday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed up 30 points to 15,658. The Nasdaq rose 14 points to 3,690. The S&P 500 rose 3 points to 1,710. The LABJ Stock Index rose 1 point to 170.

YouTube to Open New York Studio

YouTube will open a production studio in New York next year, complementing similar facilities in London, Tokyo and locally in Playa Vista, the Wrap reports.

American Apparel Buys New York Boutique

On the heels of refinancing its debt load in April, American Apparel Inc. has made a purchase for itself: the New York specialty retailer Oak, California Apparel News reports.

L.A. Auto Show Will Host Nine World Debuts

Los Angeles Auto Show organizers have confirmed that this year’s event will host more than 50 new vehicle debuts, nine of which will be shown to the public for the very first time, Auto Evolution reports.

Delta Plans LAX-SFO Shuttle

Delta Air Lines plans to start an hourly shuttle service between Los Angeles and San Francisco airports next month, the Los Angeles Times reports.

WGA Panel to Decide 'Fashion Police' Flap

The Writers Guild of America East has established a panel of judges on a trial board convened to address charges that “Fashion Police” host Joan Rivers did the work of striking writers, the Wrap reports.

Downtown Site Under Negotiation

Negotiations are under way for the sale of a prime 6.3-acre slab of empty land in downtown Los Angeles, near the Staples Center and the L.A. Live entertainment complex, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Millennium Project May Sit on Active Fault

California's state geologist has declared that a Hollywood earthquake fault is active and may run directly underneath a controversial skyscraper project, an issue that surfaced just before the L.A. City Council approved the development last week, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Rothman, Sony Pictures to Form Join Venture

Former 20th Century Fox executive Tom Rothman and Sony Pictures Entertainment are launching a new TriStar Productions joint venture, Variety reports. The Hollywood Reporter looks at what the deal means for Sony.

Unions Get Creative to Halt Membership Decline

With union membership on the decline, labor leaders are getting more creative - and some say more desperate - to boost sagging numbers and rebuild their waning clout, the Associated Press reports.

Feds Shut Down Debt Collection Operation

Federal officials have shut down a California debt collection operation for allegedly extorting payments from consumers by posing as process servers and using false threats of lawsuits, the Los Angeles Times reports.

WikiLeaks Founder Fighting 'Fifth Estate'

DreamWorks and Disney are gearing up for a challenge as they roll out Bill Condon's “The Fifth Estate” on Oct. 11. Its subject, Julian Assange is using his whistle-blowing website to fight the project, the Hollywood Reporter says.

Why It's So Expensive To Be Poor

The expression "time is money" is especially true for the poor. NBC News looks at how those who earn little often spend more of their resources than the well-off managing the basics of their lives.

Jobs Data Weighs Down Markets

The bulls were eager for a strong July nonfarm payroll report today to argue that the economy had reached "escape velocity." But that didn’t happen, CNBC reports, at least not yet.

Markets Down

In Friday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 40 points to 15,588. The Nasdaq fell 3 points to 3,673. The S&P 500 fell 4 points to 1,703.

Thursday, August 1

DirecTV Misses Wall Street Expectations

DirecTV on Thursday missed second-quarter profit forecasts and admitted that it had added fewer Latin American subscribers than expected, a potential sign that the satellite TV provider’s fastest-growing market is faltering.

Activision Blizzard Beats Analyst Forecasts

Activision Blizzard Inc. posted strong earnings for the second quarter, beating its internal guidance and analysts’ projections, even as the company continued to shed subscribers to “World of Warcraft.”

Sales Boost Staar Surgical’s Quarter

Staar Surgical Co. shares jumped 18 percent on Thursday after the vision products company moved from a loss to profit in the second quarter amid growing overseas demand for one of its implantable corrective eye lenses.

L.A. Sports Industry Generated $4 Billion in 2012

L.A. area sporting events pumped more than $4 billion into the local economy last year, according to a study released Thursday.

American Homes 4 Rent Goes Public

American Homes 4 Rent began trading on the New York Stock Exchange Thursday after the real estate investment trust's initial public offering raised nearly $706 million.

Markets Gain

In Thursday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average closed up 128 points to 15,628. The Nasdaq rose 49 points to 3,676. The S&P 500 rose 21 points to 1,706. The LABJ Stock Index rose 1 point to 169.

Investors Pile Into ‘Buy-to-Rent’ Sector

After buying tens of thousands of single-family homes in beaten-down markets, major investment firms, including Blackstone Group and American Homes 4 Rent in Agoura, are now in the landlord business, the Los Angeles Times reports.

What’s in Store for YouTube’s Big Networks?

YouTube celebrities and online video executives gathering at the fourth annual VidCon this weekend have a money problem that didn't exist before: They have more of it, The Wrap reports.

Lantana Complex Sells for More than $310 Million

As Santa Monica's burgeoning media district solidifies its position as a center for entertainment and technology businesses, the sprawling Lantana complex has sold for more than $310 million, the Los Angeles Times notes. The news was first reported by Los Angeles Business Journal.

Judge Rejects Fed’s Cap on Debit Card Fees

A federal judge on Wednesday tossed out a rule on fees banks can charge merchants when they swipe customers' debit cards, saying the Federal Reserve didn't do enough to limit the levies, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Deputy Treasury Secretary Named

The White House on Wednesday said that it will nominate Federal Reserve Governor Sarah Bloom Raskin to fill the No. 2 post at the Treasury Department, which the Washington Post reports would make her the highest-ranking woman in the agency’s history.

Crowds Returning to Las Vegas, Gambling Less

Though tourists have returned to Las Vegas, and jobs and construction are up, some fear another bubble and see a fundamental shift away from gambling, the New York Times reports.

Starbucks Becomes More Important to Hollywood

As Hollywood takes advantage of new digital platforms to distribute its content, Starbucks is about to play a more important role for studios as a revenue source, Variety reports.

L.A. Rescinds Broken Meter Ticketing

The Los Angeles City Council on Wednesday voted to rescind, for at least six months, a city policy allowing tickets to be issued to cars parked at broken meters, the Los Angeles Daily News reports.

DWP Changes Lenient Sick Day Policy

Responding to public criticism of an unusually generous sick pay policy, Los Angeles' Department of Water and Power said Wednesday it will immediately begin requiring employees to provide a doctor's note for absences of three or more days, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Shell's Profit Falls on Shale Write-Down

Royal Dutch Shell has written down the value of its North American shale assets by more than $2 billion after disappointing drilling results, highlighting the difficulties big oil companies are having finding new oil that they can pump at a profit, the Wall Street Journal reports.

U.S. Manufacturing Accelerates More Than Forecast

Manufacturing in the U.S. expanded at the fastest pace in more than two years as orders and production jumped, indicating more factories were growing optimistic about the second half of the year, Bloomberg News reports.

Give Me Your Yuan

American government officials at all levels are flocking to Beijing and Shanghai in hopes of recruiting Chinese investors who are eager to expand their businesses, or in some cases safeguard their wealth, Bloomberg BusinessWeek reports.

'Daily Show' Slams Congress on Immigration Reform

With public disapproval of the House of Representatives hovering near 77 percent, John Oliver joked on Wednesday's “Daily Show” that "Congress" has become a dirty word, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Markets Up

In Thursday morning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 120 points to 15,620. The Nasdaq rose 36 points to 3,662. The S&P 500 rose 16 points to 1,702