Stories for June 2008

Monday, June 30

Diamond Named APG Media Chief Amid Slow Ad Sales

Action Pursuit Group has a new chief, in the Media & Marketing column

Image Conscious

Medison scrapping out market share for 3-D and 4-D ultrasound machines

Quiksilver's DC Looking Beyond PacSun

DC Shoes may have lost PacSun business,but it's beefing up sales through other retailers

Downey President Steps Down

Newport Beach-based Downey Financial Corp. said Monday that President Frederic McGill left after eight months with the savings and loan operator.


Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses

Pimco's Gross Says Another Stimulus Jolt Needed

Longer term Treasury bond yields have bottomed and will steadily rise because of inflation pressures in the aftermath of the ongoing economic downturn, the manager of the world's biggest bond fund wrote on Monday.

Made in OC: Guitars, Other Specialized, High-Price Products

Everything from guitars and clothes to weapons and medical devices are made here.



Rumor's True: Jones Lang Buys Staubach for $613M

The next round of consolidation among real estate brokerages is under way, in the Real Estate column

Specific Media Gearing Technology for Prez Election

An online advertising startup is using its technology to try and drum up business in this year's presidential election, in the Technology column

7-Eleven Pushing Mom and Pop Stores to Switch Over

7-Eleven is ramping up its efforts to convert mom and pop stores, in the Marketplace column


Open Letter to "EastEnders" Viewers

Allergan Seen Growing Through Cosmetic Slowdown

Allergan is holding its own in the cosmetic medical market, in the Healthcare column


This past week's news from and other sources


The Week's Best, Worst Performers; Roth OC50, Billion Dollar Club, OC Tech; Index Watch, 52-week Performance

Specialized Marketing Consolidates to Santa Ana HQ

Specialized Marketing Services is consolidating its headquarters into one Santa Ana building, in the Small Business column

Mixed Samueli Reaction; Some Predict Recovery

There could be life after options for Broadcom cofounder Henry Samueli

Moreno, Pringle Smile,for Cameras; Chris Cox's Side

Moreno, Pringle Smile,for Cameras; Chris Cox's Side

Five Employers Buck Trend, Expand Offices Half a Million Sq. Ft.

Office leasing still is slow in Orange County, but don't blame area's more estab-lished employers for the stagnant market

Dr. Fresh Moving Manufacturing from China to Buena Park HQ

A maker of dental and personal care products is moving manufacturing to the county

H & R; Block Results Beat Estimates, Stock Soars

Tax preparer H & R; Block Inc. said on Monday it swung to a quarterly profit from a loss, beating estimates and driving the stock 6.6% higher, as revenue rose 11%.

Apria, Others Lose Round on Medicare Bidding

The home healthcare industry, which counts Lake Forest's Apria Healthcare Group Inc. as one of its leaders, lost a legal fight Monday when a federal court upheld Medicare's plan to put in a competitive bidding plan for oxygen tanks and other durable medic


Commentary by Nancy Teel, a member of the Orange County "EastEnders" group.

Boeing Fuels Defense Cos.' Hiring Drop

Boeing led a decline in hiring among the county's top defense and aerospace companies

Midwest Business Activity Less Weak In June

Business activity in the Midwest contracted in June for a fifth straight month but at a less severe rate, even as production and new orders both slipped, a report showed on Monday.

Del Presidente

Del Presidente - Shirlene Lopez has worked her way up at Del Taco


West Orange County industrial continues to hold the momentum of previous quarters

Friday, June 27

Grubb & Ellis to Respond to Former Chair's Criticism

Santa Ana-based Grubb & Ellis Co. said it will respond to former chairman Tony Thompson's request for a board seat "in due course."

Consumer Spending Jumps As Stimulus Checks Land

Consumer spending jumped last month as stimulus checks boosted household budgets and pushed the saving rate to the highest level since 1995, but another report released on Friday showed confidence took a hit.

Samueli: May Get Past Guilty Plea

There could be life after options for Henry Samueli. The cofounder, former chairman and ex-technology chief of Broadcom Corp. could end up regaining standing as one of the county's top businesspeople and philanthropists, observers say.

KB Home Posts Deeper Loss

KB Home, the fifth largest home builder, posted a deeper quarterly loss on Friday on tumbling revenue as the U.S. faced its deepest housing slump in decades.

Analyst Cuts First American Profit Outlook

An analyst cut his earnings projections for Santa Ana-based title insurer First American Corp. and its key rival amid the ongoing housing and mortgage slump.

Stocks Decline Again After Thursday's Big Drop

Stocks slumped again Friday after a sharp dive in the previous session, with investors anxious about a new oil price record and dubious that personal income and spending will remain resilient.

Thursday, June 26

Lennar Posts Worse-than-expected Loss; Orders Fall

Lennar Corp., the second-largest home builder, on Thursday reported a bigger-than-expected quarterly net loss as deliveries and new orders tumbled, sending its shares down nearly 5%.

Another Analyst Starts Covering Broadcom on Upbeat Note

Irvine chipmaker Broadcom Corp. saw another analyst start following the stock late Wednesday, showing how Wall Street is more concerned about the company's growth prospects than the legal troubles of its cofounders.

Former Grubb & Ellis Chairman Seeks to Regain Seat

Tony Thompson, the former chairman of Santa Ana-based Grubb & Ellis Co., said on Thursday he's unhappy with the real estate investor and brokerage's performance and is seeking re-appointment to the company's board.

GDP Growth Revised Up; Job Market Sluggish

The economy grew slightly faster than initially thought in the first quarter, while the job market remained sluggish last week, according to data released on Thursday.

More Mergers Seen In Defense Space

Italian defense manufacturer Finmeccanica SpA's recent $4 billion acquisition of U.S. defense company DRS Technologies Inc. was a big one, but it is not the last one.

Wednesday, June 25

Fed Seen Holding Rates As Inflation Unease Grows

The Federal Reserve is expected to hold interest rates steady on Wednesday, while indicating slightly greater unease on inflation though stopping well short of signaling higher borrowing costs are imminent.

Boeing Shares Plummet After Goldman Cut

Boeing Co. shares fell to a two-year low on Wednesday after Goldman Sachs cut its rating on the plane maker and defense company to "sell" from "neutral," reflecting falling orders, problems facing airlines and high fuel prices.

MasterCard Settles Lawsuit With American Express

MasterCard Inc., the world's second-largest credit-card network, said on Wednesday it will pay American Express Co. up to $1.8 billion to settle a lawsuit that said MasterCard and Visa blocked banks from issuing cards from their rival.

Circuit Board Maker TTM Wins BAE Contract

Santa Ana's TTM Technologies Inc., a maker of printed circuit boards, said Wednesday it won an $8 million contract from a big defense company.

Federal Reserve Leaves Rate Unchanged

The Federal Reserve, navigating treacherous economic waters, decided on Wednesday to leave a key interest rate unchanged, bringing an end to a string of consecutive rate cuts.

OC Home Prices Tumble 9% in May; Sales Up

The price of an existing Orange County home fell 9.4% in May from April, while the increased volume of distressed homes on the market helped push area sales by nearly 30% during that time, the California Association of Realtors said on Wednesday.

Tuesday, June 24

Startup Raises $50M to Acquire Online Media Cos.

A Texas venture capital firm has pledged $50 million toward the start of an Orange County-based holding company that's set to buy online media businesses.

Advanced Medical, Alcon Strike Licensing Deal

Santa Ana-based Advanced Medical Optics Inc. and Alcon Inc., which employs more than 670 people in Irvine, signed a patent cross-licensing deal related to eye lenses implanted during surgery.

Chapman: County to Lose 18,000 Jobs; Rebound in '09

The Orange County economy will continue to shrink through the end of the year, according to Chapman University's annual economic forecast update on Tuesday.

NHL Suspends Samueli From Ducks

The National Hockey League suspended Anaheim Ducks owner Henry Samueli from being involved with the team after the billionaire pleaded guilty on Monday to lying to federal investigators about his involvement in stock options backdating at Irvine chipmaker

Dow Chemical Sets New Price Hikes, Cuts Output

Dow Chemical Co., the biggest chemicals manufacturer, said on Tuesday it will boost its prices by as much as 25%, institute freight surcharges and cut output of some products because of soaring energy prices.

UPS Shares At 4 1/2-year Low After Profit Warning

United Parcel Service Inc. shares fell 4.6% on Tuesday to their lowest point since late 2003, the morning after the world's largest package-delivery company cut its second-quarter profit outlook citing high fuel costs and a weak economy.

Longtime Quality Systems CEO Leaving

Shares of Irvine-based Quality Systems Inc. fell Tuesday after the company said Chief Executive Lou Silverman will resign in August.

House Prices and Consumer Confidence Dive

Consumer sentiment slid to a 16-year low in June while house prices suffered record annual drops in April, according to data on Tuesday that suggested a retrenchment in spending that will keep squelching economic growth.

Monday, June 23

Rooms for Rent

Hotel Developers Cautious with Building Plans as Economy Slows, Gas Prices Grow


Projects, developments and other activity in cities in and around OC

Mid-Cities Bucks Trend As Sales and Leases Accelerate

Mid-Cities Bucks Trend As Sales and Leases Accelerate


High Praise; No Sympathy. Letters to the Editor.


Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses


Fundraisers and charitable donations from companies and people

Entrepreneur Media Set To Be Bought, Names Editors

Big changes are playing out at Entrepreneur Media, in the Media & Marketing column

Projects With SunCal Drive Part of Lehman's Big Loss

SunCal projects were part of Lehman Brothers' big quarterly loss, in the Real Estate column

Grand Openings

2007 Saw 7.8M Square Feet from New Buildings, Developers Pull Back for 2008 Projects

Maker of Pollution Control Gear Doubling Space in Santa Ana

A Santa Ana maker of pollution control equipment for power plants is doubling the size of its local manufacturing operations


The Week's Best, Worst Performers; Roth OC50, Billion Dollar Club, OC Tech; Index Watch, 52-week Performance

Montage Operator Readying Beverly Hills Hotel

Laguna Beach-based Montage Hotels & Resorts is set to open a Beverly Hills hotel


Sales and leases of offices, industrial buildings, retail space and apartments

Kaiser Aluminum Doing $19M Tennessee Plant Upgrade

Foothill Ranch-based Kaiser Aluminum Corp. said Monday it is investing $19 million to expand its Tennessee plant.


TECHNOLOGY - Epicor's chief executive likens his management style to former basketball coach Bobby Knight

Conexant Adds Massengill, Other Director to Board

Newport Beach chipmaker Conexant Systems Inc. said Monday it's adding two directors to its board, one of them a Western Digital Corp. veteran.

Wanted: Visitors to Dana Point Harbor

Dana Point Harbor is looking to lure more businesses and visitors

SRS Labs Inks Deal With Flat-Panel TV Maker Vizio

Santa Ana's SRS Labs signed a licensing deal to get its technology into a TV by Irvine- based Vizio, in the Technology column


This past week's news from and other sources

Raj Manufacturing Debuts Upscale Swimsuits

Raj Manufacturing is diving into luxury with its latest line of swimsuits

Julie's Gal Tops John's Guy; Here Comes Tom Campbell

Julie's Gal Tops John's Guy; Here Comes Tom Campbell


A listing of events happening all around Orange County

Advanced Medical: Word From FDA Panel on Solutions

An FDA panel of eye care experts has called for the beefing up of oversight of contact lenses and solutions, in the Healthcare column


Mark Mueller asks executives with some of OC's largest developers, owners, investors and brokers of commercial space and land for their opinions on the state of the market and what to expect in the next year.


Disney lovers, get ready for the "Toy Story" ride at Disney's California Adventure theme park



Software Maker Adds to Local Headcount by 200

One of the county's oldest makers of business software is on a hiring streak

E & Y;'s Irvine Office Getting New Leader

Ernst & Young's Irvine office has a new local leader,again

Honda Dealer Set To Lease Automaker's Hydrogen Car

Power Honda Costa Mesa will be one of a few dealers leasing Honda's hydrogen car, in the Marketplace column


Fighting Mortgage Backlash. Solving California's mortgage crisis will require several things

Advanced Medical CEO: Upbeat on Turnaround

Advanced Medical says it's making progress on its turnaround

Bunge To Buy Corn Products for $4.4B

Banc of America Securities expects Merrill Lynch & Co. and UBS AG to write down $3.5 billion and $7 billion respectively in the second quarter and forecast a quarterly loss for the investment banks.

Charlie Palmer Opens at South Coast Bloomingdale's

The latest on OC's dining scene, in the Executive Dining column

Citigroup Slashing Investment Bank Jobs This Week

Citigroup Inc. plans to cut thousands of trading and investment banking jobs this week, part of previously reported plans to slash about 10% of its investment bank division, a person familiar with the situation said on Monday.

Republic To Buy Allied in $6B waste deal

Republic Services Inc. said on Monday it would buy Allied Waste Industries Inc. for about $6 billion in stock, merging the second and third-largest U.S. waste-disposal and environmental services companies.

Samueli Pleading Guilty to Lying to Regulators

Broadcom Corp. cofounder Henry Samueli is set to plead guilty Monday afternoon to one criminal charge related to the probe of stock options backdating at the chipmaker.

Friday, June 20

County Saw 21,000 Job Losses in May Vs. Year Earlier

Orange County's yearly job losses continued in May, while employment picked up slightly from April.

Report: Powerwave Closing Maryland Plant

Santa Ana-based Powerwave Technologies Inc., a maker of equipment for wireless networks, is looking to close a Maryland plant, according to a local newspaper.

Ford Says Sales Weaken Further; Cuts Output

Ford Motor Co. said on Friday it would slash production and delay the launch of a new version of its top-selling F-150 pickup truck due to a deepening slump in U.S. sales that will weigh on results this year and next.

Oil Rebounds On Word Israel Practiced Iran Attack

Oil futures rebounded Friday as Pentagon officials said a large scale Israeli military exercise in the eastern Mediterranean early this month was intended in part as a demonstration of Jerusalem's ability to attack Iranian nuclear facilities.

Merrill Shares Fall On Rumors Of Profit Warning

Merrill Lynch & Co. shares fell 5.5% Friday on rumors that the investment bank may issue a profit warning and take additional write-downs on its mortgage holdings, traders said.

Marion Jorgensen, Mother of Donald Bren, Dies

Marion Newbert Jorgensen, a Southern California philanthropist and mother of The Irvine Company's Donald Bren, died Wednesday at Saint John's Health Center in Santa Monica. She was 96.

Thursday, June 19

Sunstone Hotel Hires President, Eventual CEO

San Clemente-based hotel owner Sunstone Hotel Investors Inc. has hired a president who's set to become chief executive a year from now.

Circuit City Posts Wider Loss, Suspends Dividend

Circuit City Stores reported a bigger quarterly loss on Thursday as sales fell, and the consumer electronics chain said it had suspended its dividend to save cash, sending its shares down about 3%.

Former Bear Stearns Hedge Fund Managers Indicted

Two former Bear Stearns hedge fund managers were arrested and indicted on securities fraud charges on Thursday following a federal criminal probe into the collapse of two funds they oversaw.

Apria Selling to Blackstone for $1.6B

Lake Forest-based home healthcare provider Apria Healthcare Group Inc. is being bought and taken private by private equity investor Blackstone Group LP in a deal valued at $1.6 billion.

China Raises Gasoline, Diesel Prices 18%

China announced a surprise increase of about 18% in retail gasoline and diesel prices effective from Friday, state media said.

Broadcom Names Two Directors

Irvine chipmaker Broadcom Corp. said Thursday it added two directors to its board.

Dragon Brand Splits From Oakley

Carlsbad-based sunglasses maker Dragon has been bought out from Oakley Inc. of Foothill Ranch.

Wednesday, June 18

Fremont Gets Bank Sale OK; Holding Company Files for Bankruptcy

Former subprime mortgage lender Fremont General Corp. of Brea said regulators have approved the sale of its bank deposits, branches and other assets to Maryland's CapitalSource Inc.

Bush Urges Congress Lift Ban On Offshore Drilling

President George W. Bush on Wednesday called on Congress to end a decades-old ban on offshore oil drilling.

Pfizer, Ranbaxy Deal Would Delay Generic Lipitor

Pfizer Inc. said on Wednesday that Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd. can begin selling a U.S. generic form of its Lipitor cholesterol fighter by late 2011 under a settlement deal, some five months later than Wall Street expectations.

Fuel Spike Curbs Vacations, Dining Out: Poll

Many Americans will forgo vacations and dine in more often to combat soaring fuel prices, while 1 in 10 are rethinking where they live or work, according to a Reuters/Zogby poll released on Wednesday.

Quiksilver's Credit Ratings Under Review Amid Potential Rossignol Sale

Credit rating company Moody's Corp. is reviewing ratings for Huntington Beach-based Quiksilver Inc. for a possible downgrade as the clothing maker tries to sell its ski gear business.

Tuesday, June 17

Yahoo Says Mobile Search Service Reaches 600M

Internet media firm Yahoo Inc. said on Tuesday that its mobile search service will be offered by six more telecom companies in Asia.

Big Three Central Banks Tone Down Rate Hike Threats

The Federal Reserve, European Central Bank and Bank of England on Tuesday all dampened expectations for aggressive interest rate rises to counter rising inflation, sending global stocks and bonds surging in relief.

Goldman Profit Falls As Markets Slump

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. said quarterly earnings fell 11% as turmoil in financial markets hit trading and slowed investment banking, yet the firm again exceeded expectations by avoiding major losses on assets slammed by the credit crisis.

Former Epicor Executives Start Investment Company

Two former executives of Irvine-based Epicor Software Corp. have started an investment company with backing from two big private equity investors to buy and combine business software makers.

Allergan Gets Eye Drug Approval

Allergan Inc., an Irvine drug maker, said Monday that the Food and Drug Administration approved a drug to treat retinal disease.

Chip Startup Gets $26M, Eyes IPO

Irvine chip startup Solarflare Communications Inc. has raised $26 million in a round of venture funding, bringing its total raised to $126 million.

Monday, June 16

$5M-Plus Home Sales Hold in Laguna, Newport Beach

The pace of home sales in Laguna Beach and Newport Beach slowed in 2007, in the Real Estate column


The Week's Best, Worst Performers; Roth OC50, Billion Dollar Club, OC Tech; Index Watch, 52-week Performance

Sealed Up

Bal Seal Engineering makes sure there are no leaks


Sales and leases of offices, industrial buildings, retail space and apartments

'Strong Enough'

Jack's Surfboards is planning two more shops

Riviera Pushes Online Edition, Sells Statewide Ads

The new publisher of Riviera Magazine is looking to a beefed-up sales department and an online edition to weather the downturn, in the Media & Marketing column

Report: Charges May Come Against Ex-Bear Stearns Execs

Prosecutors are preparing to file criminal charges against managers of two Bear Stearns hedge funds whose collapse helped kick off the credit crisis last year, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday.


A Listing of Investment Banks in Orange County

Kingston Evaluates Timing For Solid State Flash Drives

Kingston is working out its solid state flash drive plans, in the Technology column


A Listing of Commercial Banks in Orange County


This past week's news from and other sources


A look at people, companies and institutions receiving awards, accolades, grants and other honors

Developer Plans Hotel in Whittier, With Safety Net from City

A Newport Beach developer says he is close to bringing a high-end hotel to one of the busiest intersections in Whittier

Carter Back with New Firm, Big Apartments Acquisition

The man behind one of the country's largest black-owned real estate investment firms has started a venture in Irvine

Maguire to Sell Park Place; Top OC Official Leaving

Los Angeles-based landlord Maguire Properties Inc. plans to sell the sprawling Park Place campus in Irvine, its best-known Orange County property, the company said on Monday.

Local Venture Capitalists: $41M Last Year

Investing by local venture capital firms dropped last year

STEC's Flash Drives Land in Servers, Draw Suit from Disk King Seagate

STEC doesn't seem at all threatening,but it's on the radar of the biggest disk drive makers.

Lehman Loss Matches Forecast $2.8B

Investment bank Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. posted a quarterly loss of $2.8B on Monday, matching its forecast, after recording massive trading and hedging losses.

Grubb & Ellis Buys Cypress Office Building for $25.7M

Grubb & Ellis' healthcare unit bought the former PacifiCare office building

Fenix Cosmetics Keeps Niche on Sensitive Skin Sunscreen

Fenix Cosmetics has carved its niche in the cosmetics industry with a line of products for sensitive skin, in the Small Business column


A Listing of Savings and Loans in Orange County

Edwards Lifesciences Hosts Future Senate Prez Pro Tem

Edwards Lifesciences didn't miss the chance to bend the ear of a rising political leader this month, in the Healthcare column


A Listing of Equipment Leasing, Financing Firms in Orange County

Deloitte & Touche Names New Local Managing Partner

The largest accounting firm operating in the county has a new managing partner


Orange County in Thailand? Managing Editor Julie Leupold writes about it

Indictment Aftermath: Reflection on Nick, Charges

Technology and legal types are abuzz over federal fraud and drug charges against Broadcom cofounder Henry Nicholas

Clothing Maker Moving HQ to Seal Beach

Clothing maker Affliction is moving its headquarters to Seal Beach

Former Broadcom Execs Plead Not Guilty

Broadcom Corp. cofounder Henry Nicholas pleaded not guilty Monday in Santa Ana to federal fraud and drug charges, while the chipmaker's former chief financial officer pleaded not guilty to fraud charges related to stock options.


A listing of events happening all around Orange County

SEC To Look at Adopting International Accounting Standards

Local companies may not be so eager to overhaul their accounting practices to meet an international standard

AIG Replaces CEO Sullivan Amid Subprime Woes

The world's biggest insurer, American International Group Inc., replaced CEO Martin Sullivan on Sunday after it suffered two quarters of record losses from risky mortgage bets and its share price more than halved over the past year.

Clothing Maker Affliction Moving HQ to Seal Beach

Affliction LLC, a maker of edgy clothes worn by rock stars and athletes, is moving its headquarters from Signal Hill to Seal Beach in August.

Median Home Price Falls Under $500,000

Orange County's median home price is at its lowest level since early 2004, after prices fell another $15,000 from April to May.

Laguna Artists Start Collaborative Gallery to Sell Work

A group of artists and members of the Orange County Fine Arts Association have teamed up to open a gallery, in the Marketplace column


Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses




Activity slowed in the first quarter for the manufacturing and warehouse sector. PLUS: CHARTS - Net Absorption; Vacancy Rates; Average Asking Lease Rates

Accounting Changes; WD Founder Phillips' Remaining 'Share'

Accounting Changes; WD Founder Phillips' Remaining 'Share'


Now that Barack Obama is the presumptive Democratic nominee, it is time to play the veepstakes game

Friday, June 13

Exxon to Exit U.S. Retail Gas Business

Exxon Mobil Corp. said on Thursday it is getting out of the retail gas business in the U.S. as sky-high crude oil prices squeeze margins.

May Consumer Prices Up, Core Contained

Soaring gasoline prices helped drive up overall consumer prices during May by the fastest rate in six months, but core prices remained tame, a government report on Friday showed.

Downey Sees Another Rise in Bad Loans in May

A steady buildup of bad mortgages at Newport Beach-based Downey Financial Corp. continued last month as the savings and loan operator reported that 14.3% of its assets were "non-performing" as of May 31, up from 13.3% at the end of April.

Entrepreneur Magazine Being Bought by Private Equity Firms

Irvine-based Entrepreneur Media Inc., publisher of Entrepreneur magazine, is being bought by two private equity firms, according to a report Friday.

Yahoo Makes Google Ad Deal, Microsoft Talks Fail

Microsoft's plan to establish a strong footing in online advertising suffered a big blow on Thursday as merger talks with Yahoo finally, formally failed and Yahoo said it would let Google sell search ads on its site.

Apartment Investor Carter Back With New Venture

Daryl Carter turned a $100,000 investment into one of the country's largest African-American-owned real estate investment firms earlier this decade. At his new venture,Irvine-based Avanath Capital Partners LLC,he's starting with a much bigger checkbook.

Thursday, June 12

Entrepreneurs Pick Up E & Y; Awards

Five Orange County medical, technology and other entrepreneurs were honored at a dinner Wednesday night as part of a regional program by accounting firm Ernst & Young.

May Retail Sales Rise, Helped by Rebate Checks

Sales at retailers rose a much stronger-than-expected 1% in May as many consumers had more spending cash in their wallets from government tax rebate checks, a report on Thursday showed.

GM Europe Chief Sees Sales Slumping

General Motors Corp's head of European operations said rising oil prices, high commodity costs and the strength of the euro could drive European sales down to levels not seen in decades.

Valeant Sees Successor to Fading Liver Drug Flagship

An official of Aliso Viejo-based Valeant Pharmaceuticals International said Thursday that its taribavirin hepatitis C drug candidate could replace longtime flagship ribavirin.

Thornburg Mortgage Posts $3.31B Loss

Thornburg Mortgage Inc., a specialist in jumbo home loans that nearly collapsed in March, on Thursday posted a $3.31 billion first-quarter loss as the value of securities it owns declined.

Raytheon Expanding With Big Brea Lease

Raytheon Co. is expanding its local operations with a Brea lease that is among the largest seen this year.

Wednesday, June 11

Wamu Rumors Hit Shares of Downey Financial

Shares of beleaguered savings and loan operator Downey Financial Corp. closed down more than 10% Wednesday on rumors about the nation's largest thrift, Washington Mutual Inc.

Staples Buying Corporate Express for $2.65B

Office supplies company Staples has won its battle to buy Corporate Express after the Dutch company agreed to a sweetened bid of $2.65 billion to create the world's biggest office products supplier.

Report: Lehman May Raise Money From South Korea

Lehman Brothers almost struck a deal with South Korean financial institutions as part of raising $6 billion in capital, and may yet arrange one by the end of the year, the Financial Times reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

Pacific Sunwear Plans to Start Selling Shoes Again

Anaheim-based Pacific Sunwear of California Inc. will start selling shoes in 200 of its stores in time for the back-to-school season, the company said at an investor conference in New York on Wednesday.

Fed's Kohn: Risks of Inflation Psychology Higher

A steady rise in energy prices has fueled an inflationary psychology in the U.S. and could be a problem if it does not reverse, Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Donald Kohn said on Wednesday.

Quality Systems Slumps on Cautious Analyst Comments

Quality Systems Inc.'s shares were hit Wednesday after a Jefferies & Co. analyst said he expects smaller gains for the Irvine-based medical software company.

Tuesday, June 10

Board Names Hutchens Sheriff

Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department veteran Sandra Hutchens was named Orange County Sheriff on Tuesday, becoming the first woman to hold the post.

U.S. Trade Gap Widens in April to $60.9 Billion

The trade deficit widened more than expected in April as the average price for imported oil jumped to a record $96.81 per barrel and exports and imports also set records, a Commerce Department report showed on Tuesday.

Fountain Valley's Cam Commerce Bought for $180 Million

Shares of Fountain Valley's Cam Commerce Solutions Inc., a maker of retail and payment processing software, rose after the company said Tuesday it's set to be bought in a private equity deal for about $180 million.

Report: Jaguar Land Rover Leaving Irvine

Automaker Jaguar Land Rover North America is moving its headquarters from Irvine back to northern New Jersey, according to a report in Automotive News.

Irvine's HireRight Bought for $195 Million

Irvine-based employment screening company HireRight Inc. is being bought by Virginia's US Investigations Services LLC for $195 million, according to a regulatory filing on Tuesday.

IBD survey: Consumer Confidence Hits Record Low

Consumer confidence sank to a record low in June as a surge in gasoline prices to more than $4 a gallon and a jump in the unemployment rate helped torpedo a modest rebound in Americans' outlook seen the previous month, according to a survey released on Tu

XTO Energy to Buy Hunt Petroleum for $4.2 Billion

XTO Energy Inc. said on Tuesday that it would buy crude oil and natural gas producer Hunt Petroleum Corp. for $4.19 billion in cash and stock in its second major purchase in two weeks.

Monday, June 9

Newport Beach Hires Buxton to Help Court Retailers

The city of Newport Beach has tapped a consultant to help spruce up its retail areas, in the Marketplace column

Cell Phone Makers Find Buyers in Emerging Markets

Consumers in emerging markets aren't showing signs of slowing their cell phone buying, in the Technology column


Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses

Jobs Market Declines in May

The labor market declined in May to the weakest in three-and-a-half years and is likely to deteriorate further, the Conference Board said on Monday as it launched a new leading indicator for employment.

Allergan Buying Acne Drug for $150M

Irvine drug maker Allergan Inc. is paying $150 million for a prescription acne gel that recently was cleared by regulators for wider use.

Nicholas Indictment Comes After Two Years of Options Drama

A play-by-play of the criminal indictment against former Broadcom chief Henry Nicholas


Activity slowed in North and Central Orange County. PLUS: CHARTS - Net Absorption; Vacancy Rates; Average Asking Lease Rates


FOUNDATION FUNDRAISER - Scenes from business, social, charity and other events

Big Story for Software Makers: Blizzard Tops Sage for No. 1

Quest biggest gainer with sales up by $70M


Sales and leases of offices, industrial buildings, retail space and apartments

Let It Flow

I-Flow may have a tough time convincing Wall Street it can be profitable


This past week's news from and other sources

Top Computer Products Cos.

No.1 Western Digital bucks trend with 65 hires

Hybrid: Designing for the T-Shirt Nation

The founders of a T-shirt company prefer to run the business in an unconventional way

Changing of the Guard

A gradual, inevitable changing of the guard is under way at some of Orange County's biggest technology companies.

Specialized Testing Seen Growing Beckman's Market

Medical diagnostics should enjoy steady growth in the next five years, in the Healthcare column


A listing of events happening all around Orange County

State of the State

With the state facing a huge budget deficit next year, lawmakers are eyeing a host of taxes and fees on business. Column by Howard Fine, LA Business Journal

Coast Magazine Focusing on Luxury to Weather Slump

Coast magazine and its sister publications are feeling the effects of the soft economy, in the Media & Marketing column


The Week's Best, Worst Performers; Roth OC50, Billion Dollar Club, OC Tech; Index Watch, 52-week Performance



Giant California Land Partnership Files for Chapter 11

A 15,000-acre California real estate partnership that has the nation's largest public employees pension fund as a big investor has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Lehman Raises $6 Billion, Expects Big Q2 Loss

Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. on Monday sold $6 billion of stock and convertible securities to bolster its capital base as the company prepares to post a $2.77 billion quarterly loss after trading and hedging losses.

Pacific Life Buys Scottish Re Unit for $71M

Newport Beach-based Pacific Life Insurance Co. said Monday it's buying a unit of Scottish Re Group Ltd. for $71.2 million.

2211 Michelson Leads New Offices in Tenants

Hine's Irvine tower is more than half leased

TV Maker in Irvine, Near Ports, Rivals

A flat panel TV maker has moved its U.S. headquarters to Irvine

ICU Medical Could Sell Device Line; Rough Q1

ICU Medical could look to sell a struggling business line after a rough start in 2008

Mortgage Entrepreneur Hsieh Starts Company

Mortgage entrepreneur Anthony Hsieh is back with another home finance company

Pondering IPO Dearth; Yard House Founder's $1.2 Million Backyard

Pondering IPO Dearth; Yard House Founder's $1.2 Million Backyard

Big Tech

Before Broadcom, FileNet, Western Digital, Aerospace Dominated, Gave Rise to Tech

Raytheon Inks Big Lease, Expands in Brea

Raytheon is expanding its local operations with a Brea lease

Shares of Microsemi Slump on Analyst Downgrade

Shares of Irvine chipmaker Microsemi Corp. slumped late Monday after an analyst downgraded the stock.


Projects, developments and other activity in cities in and around OC

Other Shoe Falls: Some Office Landlords Cut Rents

Some office landlords are starting to lower rents in a bid to nab leases, in the Real Estate column

Friday, June 6

Jobless Rate Hits 3-1/2-year High in May

The unemployment rate jumped by the most in 22 years in May, reaching its highest level in more than 3-1/2 years and underscoring the recessionary risk the economy still faces.

Nicholas Indictment Caps Two Years of Options Drama

This week's federal indictment of Broadcom Corp. cofounder Henry Nicholas was a long time coming.

Jobs Recovery at Least 6 months Away

A surprisingly large jump in the unemployment rate during May sparked a sell-off in shares of staffing and employment services stocks on Friday, signaling that the length and depth of the current labor market downturn may well be worse than anticipated.

Joie de Vivre Takes Over Management of Laguna Beach Hotel

San Francisco-based boutique hotelier Joie de Vivre Hospitality has taken over management of the 130-room Vacation Village hotel in Laguna Beach.

Icahn Tells Yahoo to Sell for $48.7 Billion

Carl Icahn on Friday told Yahoo Inc. that it should offer to sell the company to Microsoft Corp. for $34.375 per share, or about $48.7 billion, as the financier fired another volley in an acrimonious war of words.

SenoRx Taps Former Cooper CEO for Board

SenoRx Inc. of Aliso Viejo said Friday that A. Thomas Bender, a veteran Orange County medical device executive, is a new member of its board.

Thursday, June 5

Quiksilver: Potential Sale of Rossignol In Process

Huntington Beach-based Quiksilver Inc. said Thursday that the maker of surf-inspired clothes has begun a process to sell its struggling Rossignol unit.

PacSun, Wet Seal See Drops in May Same-Store Sales

Same-store sales at mall retailer Pacific Sunwear of California Inc. fell as expected by Wall Street, while Wet Seal Inc.'s decline came in slightly better than expected.

Edwards Appealing Verdict in Product Lawsuit

Edwards Lifesciences Corp. said it's fighting a $40.1 million punitive damage award stemming from a product liability lawsuit.

Nicholas Drug Charges Are Lurid, Touch on Broadcom

The federal indictment of former Broadcom Corp. chief and founder Henry Nicholas is rife with allegations of rampant drug use and paints the picture of a CEO gone wild.

May Retail Sales Largely Beat Expectations

Many retailers reported better-than-expected May sales on Thursday, with discounters and dollar stores attracting customers looking to save money in the weak economy, but department stores continued to struggle.

Broadcom Cofounder Nicholas Indicted

A federal grand jury has indicted Broadcom Corp. cofounder and former chief executive Henry Nicholas on charges related to the backdating of options at the chipmaker and suspicion of violating federal drug laws.

Weekly Jobless Claims Unexpectedly Fall

The number of workers filing new claims for jobless benefits fell unexpectedly last week to the lowest level since mid-April, a government report said Thursday, raising optimism that the sluggish economy may skirt a recession.

Verizon Wireless to Buy Alltel in $28.1 Billion Deal

Verizon Wireless said on Thursday that it would buy Alltel Corp. for $28.1 billion, including $22.2 billion in debt, vaulting the combined company to first place in the U.S. mobile services market ahead of AT & T; Inc.

Wednesday, June 4

Smucker to Buy P & G;'s Folgers in $3 Billion Stock Deal

J.M. Smucker Co. will acquire Folgers, the largest U.S. coffee business, from Procter & Gamble Co. for stock valued at $2.95 billion, the companies said on Wednesday.

Ingram Micro Affirms Q2 Outlook, Buys China Business

Santa Ana's Ingram Micro Inc., the biggest distributor of technology goods, reaffirmed its second-quarter outlook on Wednesday.

Private Sector Jobs, Productivity Up

The private sector added workers in May, defying Wall Street's expectations of a fall and suggesting the world's largest economy may be coping surprisingly well with the current housing-led downturn.

Fremont Wraps Up Sale of Mortgage Servicing Business

Brea-based Fremont General Corp. has closed on the sale of its last mortgage servicing rights, the company said Tuesday.

MBA: Mortgage Applications Index Hits 6-year Low

Mortgage applications fell for a third consecutive week, reaching its lowest level in over six years as demand for home refinancing loans plunged, an industry group said on Wednesday.

Allergan Files for Approval of Eyelash Drug

Allergan Inc., an Irvine drug maker, said Wednesday it plans to file for Food and Drug Administration approval of a drug to spur eyelash growth.

Tuesday, June 3

GM to Close Four Plants, May Unload Hummer Line

General Motors Corp. on Tuesday said it was closing four North American truck plants and could sell its Hummer brand to cut slow-selling trucks and SUVs from its lineup in response to higher gasoline prices the automaker now sees as a permanent threat to

Downey Slumps on Creditworthiness Concerns

Shares of Newport Beach-based Downey Financial Corp. closed down 7% on credit concerns from Standard & Poor's Tuesday.

Corinthian Jumps on Outlook, Analyst's Take

Shares of Santa Ana-based Corinthian Colleges Inc. got a boost on Tuesday after a Lehman Brothers analyst raised his price target on the vocational school operator's stock on expected enrollment gains and revenue growth.

Bernanke Warns on Dollar, Rates Well-Positioned

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke on Tuesday issued a rare warning on the inflationary risk posed by a weak dollar, but said interest rates were "well positioned" for an economy facing both price pressures and threats to growth.

Soros: Oil Price Crash Not Imminent Despite Bubble

The phenomenal rise in oil prices show signs of a bubble, but a crash is not imminent, billionaire hedge fund manager George Soros told lawmakers on Tuesday.

New CEO for Accounting Services Company Resources Connection

Donald Murray, founder of Santa Ana-based accounting services company Resources Connection Inc., has stepped down as chief executive to become executive chairman and to make way for the second boss in the company's nine years.

Monday, June 2

Wachovia Ousts CEO Thompson After Losses Mount

Wachovia Corp. ousted Ken Thompson as chief executive of the fourth-largest U.S. bank in the wake of growing legal troubles and loan losses tied to the purchase of a big mortgage lender just before the nation's housing boom went bust.


Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses

Sunstone Sells L.A. Hotel, Could Sell Others

San Clemente-based hotel owner Sunstone Hotel Investors Inc. said Monday it sold a hotel for $366.5 million and could seek to sell more.

SEC Concludes Triple Net Properties Probe; No Action Taken

Santa Ana-based Grubb & Ellis Co. said on Monday that the Securities and Exchange Commission has closed its investigation of predecessor company Triple Net Properties without any enforcement action.


A listing of events happening all around Orange County

With Higher Costs, Printers Eye Services, Acquisitions

Local printers are eyeing more services and acquisitions in order to stay competitive, in the Media & Marketing column

Developer Appeals to Anaheim, OC with NFL Plan

A real estate executive is reaching out to onetime NFL hopeful Anaheim and the rest of OC

Report: Kingston Planning Flash Memory Drives

Fountain Valley-based Kingston Technology Co., the top maker of memory for PCs and consumer devices, is set to start selling flash memory-based drives.

BCS Targets Startups For Its Communication Set-Up

An installer of communications gear is targeting startups, in the Small Business column

Orange Coast Readies New Magazine Look

Orange County's lifestyle magazines are getting face-lifts

UCI Med Center Boss: First Nurse, Now CEO

UCI's Maureen Zehntner

April Construction Spending Fell 0.4 Percent

Construction spending slipped in April as home building continued to plummet, but private spending on non-residential projects rose for a third straight month, government data showed on Monday.

Two Months on Job, Standard Pacific CEO Lands Life Preserver

Standard Pacific's chief executive's hard work is paying off with a big financing deal


Fundraisers and charitable donations from companies and people



Conexant Ups Guidance After Business Sale, Pending Reverse Stock Split

Shares of Newport Beach-based chipmaker Conexant Systems Inc. rose Monday after the company announced a reverse stock split and said results for the June quarter are expected to come in at the high end of its outlook.

Global Chip Sales Rise 5.9 Percent in April

Global sales of semiconductors rose 5.9 percent in April on solid demand for personal computers, mobile phones and products using flash memory, an industry group said on Monday.

Gateway's Taking Shape Within Acer; No Local No. 1

Irvine's Gateway is shaping up under its Taiwanese parent, in the Technology column

Surf Summit

Tequila and surfing were big at the surf industry's conference in Cabo

Family Values

Cameron Welding's Betsy Perry

Healthcare Funding Falls But Still Dominates

Healthcare companies got a smaller piece of OC's growing venture capital funding in the first quarter

Impac Reports $2B Loss, Company Upbeat about Next Year

The mood at Impac Mortgage is starting to look a little brighter, despite a $2 billion loss in 2007, in the Real Estate column


Sales and leases of offices, industrial buildings, retail space and apartments


The commercial real estate market in South Orange County is steady despite a slowing housing market. PLUS: CHARTS - Net Absorption; Vacancy Rates; Average Asking Lease Rates

Sage Software's Smith Mentors at Work, Home

Sage Software's Nina Smith

'Thomas II' a Wet Seal Hit; Greenhut Going?

'Thomas II' a Wet Seal Hit; Greenhut Going


Thoughts on Orange County's secret plan. Commentary by Michael D. Capaldi

Better with Age

South County Senior Services' Marilyn Ditty

Acura Dealers On Board With Push for Luxury Buyers

Honda Motor is looking to make Acura a top luxury brand, in the Marketplace column


Tech Reporter Sarah Tolkoff's Journey Down Under

Temp to Hire

Alar Staffing's Pati Cinkle


This past week's news from and other sources


The Week's Best, Worst Performers; Roth OC50, Billion Dollar Club, OC Tech; Index Watch, 52-week Performance