Stocks creeping higher: Wall Street continues to be unfazed by the generally lousy news week. Dow is up about 70 points.
Oil keeps rising: Crude prices are over the $106 a barrel mark, another sign that gas prices won't be coming down anytime soon. (AP)
Jobless claims fall: Weekly filings slipped 5,000 to a seasonally adjusted 382,000. The four-week moving average dropped 1,500 to 385,250. Anything below 400,000 indicates steady job growth. (Reuters)
Public support for Brown's plan eroding?: Only 46 percent of likely voters support the governor's plan for a five-year tax extension, according to a Public Policy Institute of California poll, compared with 53 percent in a PPIC survey two months ago. From the LAT:
The survey suggests that even if Brown manages to hold a special election, selling the taxes to the public will not be easy. Ballot measures with less than 50% support before a campaign begins typically fail. "While many Californians still favor the approach the governor proposed in January, his plan to seek a budget solution through a June ballot has become a more difficult task to achieve," said PPIC President Mark Baldassare.
L.A. leaders protest federal cuts: The mayor's office says that $571 million in funding will be eliminated for programs that cover public safety, transportation, job creation and housing. (City Maven)
Tangle of budget cut claims: For all the protests, there are lots of federal programs being slated for trimming that either duplicate something else or aren't all that popular. From NPR:
The House bill approved as part of a $61 billion package of spending cuts would provide no new money for vouchers to house homeless veterans. Senate Democrats called that "unacceptable," reckless" "heartless" -- even "immoral." "If you get rid of this program, this is 10,000 vouchers -- 10,000 veterans -- who literally could be in the streets and die, get very ill," Sen. Barbara Boxer of California said at a recent news conference. What she didn't say is that the House did exactly what President Obama asked for in his 2011 budget. He requested a one-year break in the program because of a backlog in getting veterans into housing.... Iowa Republican Rep. Tom Latham said on the House floor in February....that of 30,000 vouchers already available for homeless veterans, 11,000 had yet to be used.
California's per capital income: $43,104: That's a modest 2.5 percent increase from 2009, putting the state in 12th place. Connecticut is highest, at $56,001, followed by Massachusetts and New Jersey. Mississippi was last. (OC Register)
Feds to charge Minkow: The ZZZZ Best scamster will be accused of committing securities fraud in connection with his critical report on homebuilder Lennar Corp. (WSJ)
New sexual harassment suit against Charney: The CEO of L.A.-based American Apparel is accused to trying to have sex with a former sales associate in his bedroom. From the NYT:
In an interview, Kimbra Lo, the former associate, said the harassment happened last December, seven months after she left American Apparel, when she went to Mr. Charney's Los Angeles home to discuss being rehired as a photographer and model. Previously Ms. Lo, 19, worked in one of the company's New York stores. Her claim is part of a lawsuit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court that also named three other women -- Alyssa Ferguson, Marissa Wilson and Tesa Lubans-Dehaven -- who did not publicly disclose the nature of their complaints because they signed confidentiality agreements while employed at American Apparel.
Walgreens to buy drugstore.com: The $409-million deal expands Walgreens online presence. The drugstore chain has introduced an app for the iPhone that, among other things, will send a text message when prescriptions are ready. (DealBook)