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Builder will start a division in L.A. IRVINE - Standard Pacific Corp., one of the nation's largest home builders, announced Thursday the formation of a new division in Los Angeles.

``Standard Pacific has been an active home builder in Los Angeles County for several decades, building new home communities at suburban locations through the management teams of our Orange and Ventura county divisions,'' said Scott Stowell, Standard Pacific's Southern California regional president.

``While we will continue to build in suburban locations, this new division was formed to meet the growing need for high density, urban-infill housing in Los Angeles and its surrounding communities,'' he said.

Alan Boeker was named president of the Los Angeles division.

Activision picks up game maker

SANTA MONICA - Santa Monica-based Activision Inc. announced Thursday that it has acquired game developer Vicarious Visions, the creative studio behind the best-selling third-party Nintendo DS title ``Spider-Man 2.''

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

30-year mortgage rates slide down

WASHINGTON - Rates on 30-year mortgages fell for a third straight week as investors' concerns about inflation were eased by reports showing that prices fell in December.

The weekly survey released Thursday by the mortgage company Freddie Mac showed that rates on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 5.67 percent for the week ending Jan. 20, compared with 5.74 percent last week.

Rates on 15-year fixed-rate mortgages, a popular option for refinancing, declined this week to 5.15 percent, from 5.19 percent last week. Rates on one-year adjustable-rate mortgages were 4.11 percent this week, little changed from last week's 4.10 percent.

Gadzooks Inc. set to sell off assets

DALLAS - Bankrupt teen-clothing chain Gadzooks Inc. has given up plans to reorganize and will sell off its assets, including leases at its 243 stores in 40 states.

The company said Wednesday it has bankruptcy court approval to go ahead with the sale.

Ford shows profit in fourth quarter

DEARBORN, Mich. - Income from Ford Motor Co.'s financing and credit business helped the nation's No. 2 automaker swing to a $104 million profit in the fourth quarter despite a loss on the automotive side.

The company, which released fourth-quarter and year-end results Thursday, withheld its financial forecast for 2005 until next week.

Forecast gloomy amid AT&T gains

NEW YORK - AT&T Corp. closed out another rough year with a strong fourth quarter driven by aggressive cost-cutting and restructuring efforts, but the telephone company issued a dour forecast for the year ahead.

Earnings for the final three months of 2004 nearly doubled to $625 million, or 78 cents per share. In the same period in 2003, AT&T earned $340 million, 43 cents per share.

More than half of the latest profit came from a tax benefit related to last fall's huge write-down in the value of AT&T's long-distance phone network.

Two airlines see soaring Q4 losses

NEW YORK - Delta Air Lines, which barely avoided filing for bankruptcy protection last fall, said Thursday that it lost a record $2.2 billion in the fourth quarter of 2004, seven times the loss it recorded in the same period in 2003.

Continental Airlines said it lost $206 million in the fourth quarter, or $3.12 a share, including special charges. It had a profit of $47 million, or 47 cents a share, in the period a year before. Without one-time charges, Continental's loss was $174 million, or $2.62 a share.

The reports by the two airlines were the latest in what was a bitter quarter for the nation's seven major carriers.
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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Jan 21, 2005
Words:595
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