Thursday morning headlines

Stocks head higher: But it continues to be a bumpy ride amid all kinds of worries about Spain, Greece, and Italy. Dow is up 110 points.

Bankers preparing for next week: If Greek voters elect the anti-austerity ticket, prospects of an EU exit are likely to increase. From the WSJ:

The owner of Greece's largest foreign-held bank is making plans to walk away from the bank if the country leaves the euro zone, the latest sign of growing international concern over the future of Europe's currency union. The contingency plan for Crédit Agricole SA, France's third-largest publicly traded bank, comes ahead of pivotal elections in Greece Sunday that could set the country on a path to leave the 17-nation currency bloc. A host of international companies have said they are preparing contingency plans, with many voicing concerns about how to retrieve cash in the country if Greece exits the euro zone. But none have disclosed potentially walking away from their assets in Greece.

Bump in jobless claims: More Americans applied for unemployment benefits, with weekly filings up 6,000 to 386,000. The previous week's number was revised upward. (AP)

Foreclosures drop in May: California filings fell 19 percent in May compared with a year earlier, according to RealtyTrac, but Riverside-San Bernardino posted the highest foreclosure rate among the 20 largest metro areas, 3.5 times the national average. (press release)

Inflation barely ripples: Consumer prices in the L.A. area rose 0.1 percent in May compared with the previous month and 1.6 percent over the past year. Cheaper gas prices last month are one reason for the tiny month-to-month increase. (BLS)

California consumer confidence edges higher: Chapman University index is at its highest level since early 2007. (OC Register)

How cable treats streaming: The Justice Department is looking into the way online video from companies like Netflix is handled. From the NYT:

One of the issues involves whether those limits to the amount of video, audio and other data that users can download are discriminatory against Netflix, YouTube and other new digital video competitors. Comcast, in particular, has come under scrutiny for its past use of data caps and other network management practices. Craig Moffett, a media analyst for Sanford C. Bernstein & Company, said that because the inquiry followed government lobbying against the caps by Netflix and other online distributors, it was "reasonable to assume that Netflix is a principal mover" of the current investigation.

Dick Clark Productions explore sale: The Santa Monica-based company has hired an investment bank to handle a possible deal. Daniel M. Snyder's Red Zone Capital bought the company from another investment group in 2007 for $175 million. (DealBook)

Protesting court cuts: Judges and lawyers rallied on the Sacramento courthouse steps in opposition to a reduction in state judiciary funding by $544 million. "What's at risk," said Joseph Dunn, [executive director of the State Bar of California], "is, frankly, what we as a nation believe is our true identity." From the Sacramento Bee:

Officials in the Governor's Office do not view the situation as quite that dire. They note that $300 million of the cut will come from the local courts' reserves, an accumulation that had totaled $562 million as of the end of the 2010-11 budget year. Another $240 million reduction will be achieved through a delay in the statewide court construction program.

Activision advances on mobile: The Santa Monica-based video game company is reaching out to independent game developers to bolster its smartphone offerings. The mobile business, while growing, is still small compared with consoles. (LAT)

L.A. bank deal: Grandpoint Capital Inc. is buying the parent company of National Bank of California, which will operate as a wholly owned subsidiary. (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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