CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 12, 2013 |
Orange County's largest toll road network on Thursday sold $2.3 billion in bonds to shore up the finances of several highways that have failed to meet revenue and ridership projections. The Irvine-based Transportation Corridor Agencies will use the borrowing to refinance the Foothill-Eastern system, which includes the 133 tollway in central Orange County as well as the 241 and 261 that run from Yorba Linda to Rancho Santa Margarita. The bond issue will extend the time that motorists must pay tolls on the Foothill-Eastern's highways by 13 years - from 2040 to 2053 - and add upward of $1.75 billion to the corridor's total interest payments by the time the bonds mature in 2053.
December 11, 2013 |
SAN FRANCISCO -- In a dramatic rebound from its bungled initial public offering last year, Facebook Inc. will join the Standard & Poor's 500 Index next week, capping its fitful rise to one of the nation's most powerful technology companies. Facebook will replace Teradyne in the S&P 500 at the close of trading Dec. 20, S&P Dow Jones Indices said Wednesday. It will also join the S&P 100 Index, replacing Williams Cos. Being friended by the index is a vote of confidence in the giant social network and means Facebook can now count on a solid base of shareholders from funds that follow the indexes.
December 10, 2013 |
SAN FRANCISCO - Social networks have found a promising new source of advertising revenue: targeting users with ads for products they browsed online. The latest form of advertising, called "retargeting," is expected to not only get more pervasive but intensify worries over privacy. Tania Mulry, an entrepreneur from Santa Clarita, said she and other people are noticing and talking about the flood of retargeting ads. One of Mulry's students in a mobile app design class at USC was unnerved that a swimsuit she browsed on Nordstrom.com showed up as an ad on her Facebook page.
December 6, 2013 |
Apparently when it comes to selling satellite TV, anything goes. In a lawsuit filed in federal court in Sacramento, satellite broadcaster DirecTV accuses Dish One, a retailer majority-owned by rival Dish Network, of using all sorts of duplicitous and illegal acts including pretending to be DirecTV representatives in an effort to poach subscribers, primarily senior citizens. Dish One has "engaged in marketing efforts to target existing DirecTV customers and convince those customers to switch to Dish Network based on false and misleading representations," DirecTV said in the suit, which makes allegations of trademark infringement, false advertising, fraud and slander.
December 5, 2013 |
NEW YORK - Few people would mistake the Long Island commuter town of Bethpage (elevation: 105 feet) for the Austrian Alps. But on a vast soundstage in an anonymous industrial park about 45 minutes from Manhattan sits a gently sloping, man-made hill that will double for one of that country's scenic peaks on Thursday. That's when NBC unveils "The Sound of Music Live!," a three-hour televised version of the 1959 Rodgers & Hammerstein musical featuring country music megastar Carrie Underwood in the iconic role of free-spirited nun-turned-governess Maria.
December 4, 2013 |
Everyone knows AMC's zombie drama "The Walking Dead" is a hit. What's less talked-about is how the show has evidently discovered some kind of anti-aging miracle potion that allows it to defy typical TV ratings trends. "Walking Dead" wrapped up the first part of its Season 4 on Sunday, with a mid-season finale that drew 12.1 million total viewers, according to Nielsen. It's the highest-rated series in the history of cable TV. And even if it aired on broadcast TV, "Walking Dead" would be TV's top show in the key adults ages 18 to 49 demographic, with a 6.6 rating.
November 30, 2013 |
Paul Crouch, a pioneering televangelist who founded Trinity Broadcasting Network, the world's largest Christian TV network, died today, according to the network's website. He was 79. The church reported in October that Crouch had fallen ill and was taken to a Dallas-area hospital while on a visit to a TBN facility in Colleyville, Texas. He had "heart and related health issues," the church said, and he was later returned to California for continued treatment. The son of a Missouri missionary, Crouch moved to California in the early 1960s to manage the movie and television unit of the Assemblies of God. A decade later, after receiving what he believed was a message from God, he began to buy television stations, cable channels and satellites and developed enough Christian programming to sustain a 24-hour network.
November 29, 2013 |
NEW YORK - Ari Rubenstein, a "Star Trek" fan who counts physics as a hobby, wants to boldly go where Wall Street has never gone before: the speed of light. Rubenstein heads Strike Technologies, a New York company that's part of a budding cottage industry racing to build networks of ultra-fast microwave radio transmitters linking the world's financial hubs. It could be the final frontier in the financial industry's tech arms race as the fastest traders scramble to get even faster, and as regulators mull over ways to prevent technology breakdowns on Wall Street.
November 23, 2013 |
Keaton Row has added a new twist to online shopping. The website, created by Harvard Business School graduates Cheryl Han and Elenor Mak, pairs shoppers with fashion advisors from all over the country, based on a personal style Q&A given to each new member who signs onto the site. Think online dating but with a refreshed and personalized wardrobe, not a first date, as the goal. "What we realized is that people want a back-to-basics, personal touch when shopping online," Han says.