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February 27, 2014 | By Richard Verrier
A new report by the Milken Institute could provide fresh ammunition to proponents of an expanded state film and TV tax credit. Set to be released Thursday, the study entitled "A Hollywood Exit: What California Must Do to Remain Competitive in Entertainment -- and Keep Jobs," paints a bleak picture of the jobs California has lost to New York and other rivals due to the proliferation of film tax credits and rebates. Among the key findings: California lost 16,137 film and TV industry jobs between 2004 and 2012, an 11% decline, according to figures from U.S. Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics.
February 26, 2014 | By Robert J. Lopez and Ben Welsh
For thousands of people seeking coveted spots at the Los Angeles Fire Department last year, it all came down to April 22. They had passed a written exam and a grueling physical agility test and now had to turn in their paperwork, which officials would use to help determine who got jobs. The applicants were told certificates showing they'd passed the physical fitness test "would be processed in the order it was received" beginning at 8 a.m. that day. The onslaught of records came via email and fax, but also from those who had lined up at the city's downtown personnel office to get their forms stamped.
February 26, 2014 | By Stuart Pfeifer
The United States could create 5.8 million jobs if it moved to end global currency manipulation, according to a report by the Economic Policy Institute. The group, a Washington think tank supported by organized labor, said that manipulation of currency exchange rates is a key factor in the United States' $703-billion annual trade deficit. Several foreign countries devalue their currencies to make their products cheaper, making it difficult for U.S. manufacturers to compete, the report said.
February 25, 2014 | By Ricardo Lopez
JPMorgan Chase & Co. announced plans Tuesday to cut 8,000 positions, more than previously forecast, as fewer Americans refinance their mortgages because of rising interest rates. The cuts will hit its mortgage and retail banking businesses, according to a Tuesday presentation, reports said .  QUIZ: How much do you know about Bitcoin? JPMorgan, the country's largest bank, also increased its target for annual net income to $27 billion. That would be a significant improvement from last year's $18-billion net income, which took a hit because of legal costs associated with regulatory enforcement actions.
February 25, 2014 | By Tony Perry
SAN DIEGO -- Police Chief Bill Lansdowne said Tuesday that he will retire effective Monday, after 10 years as chief. Lansdowne, 69, became chief here in 2003 after serving as chief in San Jose and Richmond. Lansdowne talked recently for an hour with Mayor-elect Kevin Faulconer but said that Faulconer did not request his resignation. Faulconer will be sworn in Monday. The San Diego department, with 1,856 sworn officers, has long been considered one of the nation's best, particularly in the technique of community oriented policing in which police and residents meet frequently to discuss problems.
February 24, 2014 | By Jerry Hirsch and Richard Fausset
The first Honda Fit rolled off the assembly line Friday at a new $800-million factory near Celaya, Mexico, a symbol of the growing might of the country's auto industry. Honda's U.S. factories spit out hundreds of thousands of Accords and Civics each year. But when the automaker redesigned the Fit for North America, it turned to Mexico for an increasingly skilled workforce and favorable export rules. Mexico already accounts for about 18% of North American auto production, but that's expected to jump to 25% by 2020 as automakers pour billion of dollars into factories, said Joe Langley, an analyst at IHS Automotive.
February 24, 2014 | By Karin Klein
It was confusing when, several years ago, Bill Gates blasted American education for failing to produce enough graduates in science, technology and engineering. Really? Not enough workers in those fields? At the same time that he was making these statements, I knew computer programmers and biologists who couldn't find jobs and others who were facing stagnating and falling wages. Yet, as with many positions Gates takes on education  - often backed by sizable contributions to bolster his vision  - this one took off and clung.
February 23, 2014
Re "Better than a minimum wage," Opinion, Feb. 21 USC economist Larry Harris says that instead of raising the minimum wage, low wages should be beefed up by government wage vouchers. Harris mentions that payroll taxes would increase with more employment, but since this would be facilitated by government money, it would be the dog chasing its own tail. Arguing that wage subsidies would be better than boosting the minimum wage, Harris says that business owners follow the market principle of supply and demand.
February 21, 2014 | By Salvador Rodriguez
IPod. IPad. IStamp? Steve Jobs, the late cofounder and chief executive of Apple, is among several pop culture figures who will be featured on U.S. postage stamps over the next few years. The stamp for Jobs, who led Apple during its creation and then again during its resurgence in the late 1990s and early 2000s, will be available in 2015, according to documents obtained by the Washington Post. Jobs' stamp is currently being designed. VIDEO: Pebble's latest Steel smartwatch is functional and stylish Besides Jobs, others to be honored on stamps in the next few years include Beatle John Lennon, NBA legend Wilt Chamberlain, gay rights activist Harvey Milk and musician Jimi Hendrix.
February 21, 2014 | By Laura J. Nelson
Four key executives are leaving the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority after their jobs were eliminated to make the agency more efficient and less top-heavy, officials said Friday. Employees expressed surprise that leaders of some of the agency's most important departments, including finance and real estate, would leave during a year that they had helped make possible. Metro will be managing an unprecedented $14 billion in Los Angeles County construction projects this year, including five new rail lines.
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