Stocks slip: Just mention inflation and the market freaks. So no surprise that a bigger-than-expected rise in wholesale prices has the Dow down a bit in early trading.
Best Buy warning: The electronics retailer says that holiday season markdowns will hit the bottom line in the fourth quarter. Third-quarter profits rose. (Reuters)
Help wanted - CEO: Now that Bank of New York CEO Robert Kelly has dropped out of talks to become the new head of Bank of America, it's looking as if the board will be promoting someone from within. From Bloomberg:
"There is a strong sentiment on Wall Street that any internal candidate isn't going to be the person to take the rust off the reputation of Bank of America," David Dietze, president and chief investment strategist at Point View Financial Services in Summit, New Jersey, said in an interview. His company owns an undisclosed number of the bank's shares.
Dismissing Broadcom case?: A federal judge will consider whether allegations of prosecutorial misconduct are serious enough to warrant throwing out the fraud case against former company CFO William Ruehle. From AP:
Ruehle's attorneys allege that lead prosecutor Andrew Stolper leaked information about Broadcom co-founder Henry Samueli's 2007 grand jury appearance to reporters and contacted the attorneys of two other witnesses to try to influence their testimony. One of those was former Broadcom general counsel David Dull, who was granted immunity to testify in Ruehle's case. In a hearing away from the jury last week, Stolper acknowledged leaking information to the press and called it the "stupidest thing I have done in my career."
Golden Globes: "Up in the Air" leads the field with six nominations. Also doing well are "The Hurt Locker," "Precious," and "A Single Man." The ceremony is Jan. 17. (LAT)
Disney lobbyist steps down: Preston Padden will leave his post in January to become a senior fellow at the University of Colorado Law School. (LAT)
Paramounts clips on sale: Studio is introducing a service that searches hundreds of feature films on a frame-by-frame basis. Price would depend on what you're doing with the clip. From the NYT:
The service reflects a renewed effort in Hollywood to create fresh content from existing libraries, much as ring tones became a blockbuster offering for the music industry. Movie and television studios, suffering from a steep drop in DVD sales, are hopeful that serving up clips can become a business in itself while also stoking demand for the films in their entirety.
Citrus concerns: A tree-killing disease that's showing up in the western Mexico coastal states has California growers worried. It has already ravaged the citrus industries in Florida and Brazil. (LAT)
Little interest in rooms: More members of hotel award programs are redeeming points not for overnight stays but for merchandise. From the WSJ:
The uptick in members redeeming points for merchandise comes at a cost for hotel owners, which are already coping with a steep slide in profits. When a guest redeems the points to stay at one of the chain's hotels, the owner of the hosting hotel gets paid for the cost of that room out of a reserve fund that hotels pay into. But if the patron opts for merchandise, the money goes instead to the product supplier.
Another gas dip: An average gallon in the L.A. area is now $2.949, down almost two cents from last week. (EIA)
Lacter on radio: This week's business chat with KPCC's Steve Julian looks at export growth and its effect on the movie business. Also at kpcc.org and on podcast.