Wednesday morning headlines

Stocks nudging higher: After seven straight days of gains, the market might be ready for a break. But in early trading the Dow is up about 9 points.

Bernanke's mixed message: The Fed chairman tells Congress that economic growth is picking up, but the lack of job growth remains a problem. And there's no talk about easing the Fed's infusion of dollars. (Reuters)

New iPad in production: It'll be thinner, lighter, and have at least one camera. Look for its debut in the next couple of months. (WSJ)

Stadium plans due out this week: AEG head Tim Leiweke again insisted that "not a penny" of taxpayer money would be spent on the downtown mega-project. From the LAT:

"It's easy to take shots at this," said Leiweke, who seemed taken aback at public apprehension that taxpayers could be left footing the bill -- despite AEG's vows to the contrary. "Will everyone just take a deep breath and have a little faith that we're not going to lie to people? We're going to do the right thing. Calm down....There's no tricks. There's no risks."

Chris Dodd to head the MPAA?: The former Connecticut senator is in negotiations with Hollywood's powerful lobbying group, according to Politico.

Burkle, Magic Johnson invest in Vibe: As part of the deal, Johnson becomes chairman of the media company whole holdings include Vibe and Uptown magazines and the "Soul Train" TV show. (Bloomberg)

AOL loses market value: Over the last five days it's down $315 million, which happens to be the same price AOL agreed to pay to acquire the Huffington Post. (NY Post)

Foreclosure backlog grows: Homeowners in the foreclosure process were an average of 507 days late on payments at the end of last year, compared with 406 days at the end of 2009. (Bloomberg)

Entertainment complex sold: Tribeca West, the Olympic Boulevard property whose tenants include Disney, HBO and NBC Studios, is being purchased by investment firm Ocean West Capital Partners for $58 million. (THR)

Local BBB head rescinds resignation: William Mitchell says that the national headquarters was trying to take over the Southern California chapter - and that he's coming to the rescue. From the LAT:

Nationwide, Better Business Bureaus had been embroiled in a scandal over their now-discontinued practice of giving businesses better grades if they became dues-paying members. The system was based on one devised under Mitchell's leadership of the Southern California chapter, where businesses have long complained that heavy-handed recruitment tactics amounted to a system of pay for play. The controversy reached its peak last fall when L.A. business owners critical of the BBB obtained high ratings for fake firms immediately after paying membership dues for them. The national organization discontinued the practice and began an audit of the Southern California affiliate.

Disney theme parks bounce back: Per-capita spending in the quarter ended Jan. 1 increased 8 percent and attendance was up 2 percent. Numbers were so good that the Mouse House has cut back on discount tickets. (NYT)

Harry and David nearing bankruptcy: Company known for its gift baskets says that it needs to come up with some fresh financing or else. The company had a weak holiday season. (DealBook)

More by Mark Lacter:
American-US Air settlement with DOJ includes small tweak at LAX
Socal housing market going nowhere fast
Amazon keeps pushing for faster L.A. delivery
Another rugged quarter for Tribune Co. papers
How does Stanford compete with the big boys?
Those awful infographics that promise to explain and only distort
Best to low-ball today's employment report
Further fallout from airport shootings
Crazy opening for Twitter*
Should Twitter be valued at $18 billion?
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Mark Lacter
Mark Lacter created the LA Biz Observed blog in 2006. He posted until the day before his death on Nov. 13, 2013.
Mark Lacter, business writer and editor was 59
The multi-talented Mark Lacter
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