Living space over druggist planned
A nonprofit developer of affordable housing unveiled a $20 million mixed-use development in Hollywood on Friday that combines 56 units with a Walgreens drug store.
``Views at 270'' at Sunset Boulevard and Western Avenue is the first project in Los Angeles to combine a national retailer with low-cost living space, according to the Hollywood Community Housing Corp.
Commercial developer Village Properties purchased the land, and HCHC acted as the master developer to construct the retail space, housing and subterranean parking, in return for the development and ownership of the units above Walgreens.
Gasoline cheaper for second week
Gasoline prices moved lower for the second straight week through most of the Los Angeles area, according to the Automobile Club of Southern California's Weekend Gas Watch.
The average price of self-serve regular gasoline in the region is $2.603, which is 1.6 cents lower than last week, 20 cents higher than last month and 43 cents higher than last year.
Spending, income increase in March
WASHINGTON - Americans' incomes rose by 0.5 percent in March, the best showing in three months, and they used the extra money to boost consumer spending by 0.6 percent, the government reported Friday.
The Commerce Department said the March income gain followed a 0.4 percent rise in February and was the best since a 3.7 percent surge in December, a month when the income figure soared because of a special dividend payment made by computer software giant Microsoft.
The 0.6 percent increase in consumer spending was down only slightly from a 0.7 percent gain in February and no increase at all in January. Both the rise in incomes and spending came in better than economists had expected, bucking a recent trend in which other March statistics showed economic activity slowed significantly during the month.
ChevronTexaco Q1 profits up 4%
SAN RAMON - ChevronTexaco Corp.'s first-quarter profit edged up by 4 percent, but didn't live up to analysts' expectations because oil refinery outages prevented it from taking full advantage of the high gasoline prices that have been tormenting motorists.
The second-largest U.S. oil company said Friday it earned $2.67 billion, or $1.28 per share, for the three months ended in March. That compared with net income of $2.56 billion, or $1.20 per share, in the same period last year.
Revenue for the period totaled $41.61 billion, a 24 percent improvement from $33.57 billion in the same period last year.
The earnings missed the mean estimate of $1.38 per share among analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial.
Saks subsidiaries sold to Belk Inc.
NEW YORK - Marking the first step in the breakup of Saks Inc., the Birmingham, Ala.-based department store operator on Friday said it is selling its Proffitt's and McRae's department stores to privately held retailer Belk Inc. for $622 million in cash as it considers selling its northern mid-priced department store group.
Saks, however, said it will retain and continue to operate its luxury Saks Fifth Avenue Enterprise division, as well as its upscale Parisian stores.
Upon completion of the transaction, which has been approved by the boards of directors of both companies, Belk, based in Charlotte, N.C., will operate a total of 275 stores in 14 states with an estimated annual sales volume of $3.15 billion.
Toys 'R' Us shows Q4 profit of 67%
NEWARK, N.J. - Toys 'R' Us Inc., which expects to be sold by the end of July to a private consortium, on Friday released its delayed financial results, showing that its profit surged 67 percent during its fourth quarter, which includes the critical December holidays for the nation's second-largest toy seller.
Earnings for the three months ended Jan. 29 were $259 million, or $1.18 a share, compared to $155 million, or 72 cents a share, for the same period a year earlier. The fourth quarter of 2004 included a legal settlement with Visa and MasterCard that resulted in a $20 million gain, a gain of $14 million from the sale of a toy store in Santa Monica and $15 million in gains related to the sale of former Kids 'R' Us locations.