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Preview: L.A. Times - Business

L.A. Times - Business

National and international business news. Find stock updates, the latest trends in technology, real estate news and the latest on the economy.

Last Build Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2018 20:50:36 -0800

Copyright: ©2018 Los Angeles Times

Workplace rights lawyers race to lock in payouts before Trump's business-friendly rules kick in

Sun, 21 Jan 2018 06:15:00 PST

While employers across the U.S. paid a record amount in settlements for workplace violations last year, don’t expect this to mark the beginning of a trend. Think of it more as the storm before the calm, as labor lawyers rush to lock in payouts ahead of a shifting legal landscape.

Settlements from...


Architect Frank Gehry unveils designs for long-delayed Grand Avenue project

Sun, 21 Jan 2018 05:00:00 PST

Visitors who come at all hours every day to marvel at architect Frank Gehry’s gleaming Walt Disney Concert Hall routinely turn their backs on the eyesore across Grand Avenue in downtown Los Angeles.

The shabby open-air parking structure known as “the Tinker Toy garage” has been a public embarrassment...


Avocado toast isn't the only thing eating your cash. Here are some things to dump in 2018

Sun, 21 Jan 2018 03:00:00 PST

We’ve all heard that defunding your coffee habit or laying off the avocado toast can help save money, but there are less obvious things you can remove from your budget, too.

Reach your money goals faster by paying close attention to these things in 2018:

Delivery apps

Think twice before downloading...


Get your credit score ready for the home-buying process

Sun, 21 Jan 2018 03:00:00 PST

Dear Liz: What score do you need to be approved for a mortgage? Is 520 even close? If not, how do I get that score higher quickly?

Answer: A score of 520 on the usual 300-to-850 FICO scale is pretty bad. Theoretically, you might be able to get a mortgage if you can make a large down payment, but...


How to get your taxes done for free (or close to it)

Sun, 21 Jan 2018 03:00:00 PST

The cost of tax preparation can definitely put a dent in your wallet, but there are ways to cut that bill down to zero (or darn close) if you know where to look. Here are some tricks:

Scour tax software offerings

Some packages can cost more than $75, or even $100, but if you take the time to look...


Rocket Lab's Electron rocket reaches orbit and deploys satellites

Sat, 20 Jan 2018 18:15:00 PST

Rocket Lab’s Electron rocket successfully reached orbit and deployed three satellites Saturday night Pacific time in the Huntington Beach rocket company’s second test flight.

The small-satellite launch company’s Electron rocket carried an Earth-imaging satellite and two satellites that enable weather...


American Airlines flight attendants complain about the tiny bathrooms on the 737 MAX

Sat, 20 Jan 2018 08:00:00 PST

Passengers who fly on American Airlines’ 737 Max planes will probably notice that the lavatories are extra small, with sinks so tiny that fliers can only wash one hand at a time.

The manufacturer of the plane, Boeing, designed the compact bathrooms that way to squeeze in about a dozen more seats...


As bitcoin sinks, crypto bros party hard on a Blockchain Cruise

Sat, 20 Jan 2018 07:30:00 PST

When 600 cryptocurrency enthusiasts set sail from Singapore on Monday night for their second annual Blockchain Cruise, the price of bitcoin was hovering comfortably above $13,500.

By the time their 1,020-foot-long ship pulled into Thailand on Wednesday, for an afternoon of bottomless drinks and...


Latest hotel deal puts more rooms in the hands of few hospitality companies

Sat, 20 Jan 2018 07:00:00 PST

The news last week that New Jersey-based Wyndham Worldwide is acquiring smaller rival La Quinta Holdings for $1.95 billion is only the latest in a series of deals to consolidate the nation’s hospitality industry.

But travelers shouldn’t fear that more of the country’s hotel rooms are in the hands...


United Airlines saves 170,000 gallons of fuel by using lighter paper on inflight magazine

Sat, 20 Jan 2018 06:00:00 PST

What difference can an ounce make on an airplane?

If you are United Airlines, with 4,500 flights a day, an ounce can add up. The Chicago-based carrier said it recently began printing its inflight magazine, Hemisphere, on lighter paper, cutting 1 ounce from each magazine. It now weighs 6.85 ounces.


Los Angeles Times journalists vote 248-44 to unionize

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 14:45:00 PST

Journalists at the Los Angeles Times have overwhelmingly elected to form a union, a first for the 136-year-old news organization that for much of its history was known for its opposition to organized labor.

The union drive was launched publicly in October and culminated in an election earlier this...


Stocks finish higher; S&P 500 is up 9 of the last 10 weeks

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 14:40:00 PST

Investors shrugged off the potential for a federal government shutdown Friday, driving U.S. stocks higher.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index, Nasdaq composite and Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks finished at record highs as the market bounced back from Thursday’s modest losses. The S&P...


California gains 52,700 jobs, and unemployment falls to 4.3%

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 13:50:00 PST

The California economy closed out 2017 on a robust note as the state added 52,700 net new jobs in December and the unemployment rate fell to 4.3% from 4.6% a month earlier, according to data released Friday by the state Employment Development Department.

The Golden State has now gained jobs for...


'Star Wars' toy sales fall as movie tie-in fatigue sets in

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 13:45:00 PST

The warning signs for the toy industry started last year when “Cars 3” — considered a surefire success — proved lackluster for licensees such as Mattel Inc.

Now, toy makers’ big bets on movie tie-ins look downright bleak. Playthings based on the “Star Wars” saga — the franchise that kicked off...


Delta Air Lines adds new requirements for passengers flying with service animals

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 13:00:00 PST

Responding to an increase in such incidents as animal bites, barking and defecation, Delta Air Lines has announced new requirements for passengers who want to fly with a service animal or emotional support animal.

Starting March 1, all passengers who want to fly with an animal in the cabin need...


Bruce Meyer's road to success from candle wax to classic cars

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 10:40:00 PST

Bruce Meyer was a Berkeley-educated hippie when he suggested that his family's appliance business start selling candles in a boutique addition to their Geary's retail outlet. That was the beginning of a Beverly Hills retail and real estate empire.(image)

Borrow $5,000, repay $42,000 — How super high-interest loans have boomed in California

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 08:10:00 PST

Over the past decade, loans with interest rates topping 100% have exploded in popularity as struggling households - typically with poor credit scores - have found a new source of quick cash from an emerging class of online lenders.(image)

Amazon hikes monthly Prime membership fees by 20%

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 08:00:00 PST

Amazon is raising the price of its Prime membership monthly plan by nearly 20%. The fee of $99 for an annual membership will not change, the company said Friday.

The online retailer had added the monthly payment option about two years ago as a way to hook shoppers — especially during the holiday...


In bizarre reversal under Trump, consumer agency reveals moves to protect payday lenders

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 03:00:00 PST

In what would be a laughable move if it wasn’t so incredibly tragic, the Trump administration’s newly emasculated Consumer Financial Protection Bureau this week sided with payday lenders over consumers.

You heard right. The CFPB, now led by an appointee of a businessman-politician whose companies...


Judge orders new superbug trial after finding that Olympus didn't properly disclose safety concerns

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 15:40:00 PST

A Seattle judge said Olympus Corp. failed to properly disclose internal emails that raised safety concerns about a redesigned medical scope as early as 2008, several years before the device was publicly tied to deadly superbug outbreaks.

Citing those “willful discovery violations” by the Japanese...


Amazon picks 20 possible places for its second headquarters, including L.A.

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 15:35:00 PST Inc. said Thursday that Los Angeles and 19 other places are the finalists for the $5-billion second headquarters the giant online retailer plans to build.

The largest concentration of contenders is in the Northeast; Los Angeles is the only finalist west of the Rocky Mountains.



Stocks are weighed down by industrial and energy shares

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 14:25:00 PST

Declines by Boeing, General Electric and other big industrial companies weighed on U.S. stocks Thursday, pulling the major U.S. indexes down from the record highs they set the day before.

Energy stocks contributed to the modest decline following a slide in crude oil prices. Technology companies...


Former banker sues Wells Fargo, says he blew whistle on mortgage practices

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 14:10:00 PST

A former Wells Fargo mortgage banker in Beverly Hills who was fired and later fined by federal regulators has sued the bank, saying he was used as a scapegoat and that regulators ignored his attempts to report bad practices.

David Eghbali, who had been one of the bank’s top mortgage bankers, said...


Air Force official says a continuing resolution could hurt the B-21 program

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 13:20:00 PST

Congress’ inability to pass a set budget for this fiscal year could delay delivery of the B-21 bomber, a major project that is key to the revival of the Southern California aerospace industry, an Air Force official warned Thursday.

Undersecretary of the Air Force Matthew Donovan said during an...


Uber completes sale of $9.3 billion in stock to SoftBank-led group

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 13:05:00 PST

Uber Technologies Inc. completed its deal with SoftBank Group Corp., triggering a slate of governance reforms at the ride-hailing company.

Uber shareholders sold about $8 billion of stock at a discounted price to a group of investors led by SoftBank, making the Japanese conglomerate the largest...