July 24, 2013 |
WellPoint Inc., the country's second-largest insurer, beat Wall Street expectations with a second-quarter profit jump of 24% as lower medical costs partly helped the Indianapolis company post strong results. "We are pleased with our second-quarter results and encouraged by the positive momentum we have across the organization," said Joseph Swedish, WellPoint's chief executive since March. This was the second earnings report that has beat analyst expectations under Swedish. He took the helm after the company's previous chief executive, Angela Braly, was ousted last year.
July 22, 2013 |
The royal baby is on the way! Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, was taken to St. Mary's Hospital in London on Monday morning in what palace officials said was the early stages of labor. The announcement was made at 7:30 a.m. London time, but the duchess had been admitted to the hospital around 6 a.m., according to the Telegraph . The former Kate Middleton and her husband, Prince William, both 31, traveled by car from Kensington Palace to the hospital, according to World Now , reporting from London.
July 12, 2013 |
Wells Fargo & Co. booked a record $5.5 billion in profit during the second quarter despite a dramatic rise in mortgage rates and signs of a slowdown in its refinancing business. The 19% year-over-year jump in earnings for the nation's largest home lender reflected the breakneck pace with which the U.S. housing industry has evolved. Although refinancing activity slowed as interest rates jumped, Wells Fargo still was able to grow its mortgage origination business by increasing the number of loans it made to home shoppers.
July 5, 2013 |
Wall Street has preferred to call the recent rebound in long-term interest rates a "wake-up call. " But to some bond investors it's apparently more like a five-alarm fire. As rising interest rates have pushed down the value of older bonds in the last two months, the share prices of popular bond mutual funds have slumped. Case in point: Shares of the Pimco Total Return Bond fund have dropped 6.4% since May 2. The losses aren't on the scale of what happened to stocks in 2008-09, when that market plunged nearly 50% in six months.
July 3, 2013
Re "Mall developer can keep tax revenue," June 29 Hard to believe that the Los Angeles City Council did not even pretend to be ethical in its giveaway to Australian mall developer Westfield. Letting it keep millions in tax revenue for the next 25 years to build a complex in the San Fernando Valley is absurd. When I was involved in "influencing" the political process, I went overboard in hiding any attempt to obfuscate the truth. But apparently in Los Angeles, the politicians simply thumb their noses at us, with the City Council voting 10 to 0 in favor of this massive tax giveaway after allowing the public to weigh in for only a few minutes.
June 29, 2013 |
TEHRAN - Bolstering his centrist image, Iranian President-elect Hassan Rowhani vowed “moderation” in foreign and domestic affairs Saturday in his first nationally televised address since his surprising election victory earlier this month. In an almost hourlong speech from the state broadcaster's headquarters, Rowhani used some variant of the word “moderate” at least 10 times, signaling his intention to repair Iran's fractured relations with the international community--while not compromising the Islamic Republic's independence.
June 28, 2013 |
Earnings at Tribune Co., parent of the Los Angeles Times, fell sharply in the first quarter as advertising revenue continued to slide and the company incurred a big tax bill. The company reported net income of $58.4 million in the three months, a 41% plunge from the $99.1 million in the year-earlier period. Revenue slid 3.3% to $705 million and pretax income declined 7.8% to $80.2 million. The company's bottom line was reduced by its payment of $21.8 million in income taxes in the quarter.
June 27, 2013 |
WASHINGTON -- The government reported more positive signs for the economic recovery Thursday as initial jobless claims dropped last week and consumers' personal income and spending rose in May. The number of people filing for unemployment benefits for the first time fell to 346,000 in the week ending Saturday, down from a revised 355,000 the previous week, the Labor Department said. The drop was in line with analyst projections and brings the figure below the 350,000 level that economists say is consistent with moderate labor market growth.
June 25, 2013 |
The student debt crisis is one of those issues that concentrates the minds of both parties in Congress. That's why there are at least half a dozen legislative proposals circulating in Washington to forestall a doubling of interest rates on many federal student loans scheduled to take effect July 1. But it doesn't explain why almost all those proposals ignore the one remedy to graduates' loan burdens that would make their squabbling over an interest-rate...
June 25, 2013 |
In the wake of the Great Recession, rich and poor households are separated by stark geographical divides. Most of the country's rich live in cities, while households below the poverty line are concentrated in the countryside and in some inner-city enclaves, according to an analysis by the Institute for Spatial Economic Analysis at the University of Redlands. The middle class creates buffer zones between the two. A map of income distrubution shows a sea of pink in rural America and the South, representing the bottom 25% of earners, while bright orange, representing the 10% of the highest earners, dots the Eastern Seaboard and coast of California.