Monday morning headlines

Stocks slide into the red: So much for the Spanish bailout rally. Dow is down 40 points.

Skepticism over Spain: Investors are starting to question how the $125 billion bailout would work and how effective it would be. From AP:

Investors appear to be growing increasingly concerned that by taking on so much new debt via the rescue package Spain's ability to make interest payments on its debt could be strained dangerously. "As much as the perception of the situation in Europe may have changed, plenty of risk still remains in place, with question marks over the ability of Spain to repay the debt, especially, if the country fails to get back on the growth path, the outcome of the upcoming Greek elections and the perception of situation in Italy," Anita Paluch of Gekko Global Markets wrote.

Commerce Secretary involved in hit-and-run: John Bryson suffered a seizure in connection with two car crashes in the San Gabriel Valley over the weekend, a department spokeswoman told the LAT.

Bryson had no security detail with him during the crashes because he was driving his own vehicle on personal time, sources said. Bryson, 68, was cited for felony hit-and-run following the Saturday incidents but was not booked in jail because he was taken to an area hospital. Authorities said he was cooperative with detectives, and drugs or alcohol do not appear to have been a factor.

Deadline looms on state budget: Gov. Brown and Democratic lawmakers have yet to resolve differences on health and welfare programs. The two sides are looking to reach a deal by Friday. From the Sacramento Bee:

Democrats no longer need Republicans to pass the budget, thanks to a 2010 initiative allowing majority-vote approval. They do need Republican votes to approve tax increases, but have opted instead to go directly to voters for a November tax hike on sales and high-income earners to raise $8.5 billion. Brown and Democratic lawmakers are on the same page except for about $2 billion in cuts to programs for the poor, [Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg] told The Bee.

Getting tough on welfare: L.A. County officials want to make sure payments only go to those who meet residency and work requirements. From the LAT:

The controversy over the proposed measures follows months of internal debate among board aides and top county managers over the reasons for a dramatic increase in the welfare rolls. The county's monthly general relief caseload surged from an average of 58,599 in 2007 to more than 106,000 over the 12 months ending in June 2011, increasing the program's costs 85% to $275 million. Supervisor Don Knabe argues more needs to be done to "shore up program integrity." He cited a new report by county Auditor-Controller Wendy Watanabe that estimated $850,000 a year could be saved by identifying applicants who claim to be homeless when they are living outside the county, with relatives or in jail.

Bankruptcy judge holds off Tribune Co. decision: He'll be writing an opinion on the reorganization plan, delaying approval for several more weeks. The company has been in Chapter 11 protection for three-and-a-half years. (Chicago Tribune)

Box office report: "Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted" was tops this weekend at $60.4 million, followed by Ridley Scott's sci-fi epic, "Prometheus," at $50 million. (THR)

Rose Bowl renovation over budget: Unexpected construction setbacks are blamed. Remodeling might not be finished until late 2014, about a year longer - and $35 million pricier - than planned. (LAT)

Metrolink fares going up: Average increase will be 7 percent, effective July 1. The amount will vary depending on the route and the type of ticket. (LAT)

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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