Monday morning headlines

Stocks open lower: Rally seems to be running out of steam. Dow is down 60 points.

Gas update: After a price spurt late last week, prices have settled down - an average gallon of regular in the L.A. area is $4.095, according to the Auto Club, up about a penny from Sunday and 12 cents from last week.

Carson refinery sold: Tesoro Corp. will purchase BP's facility, along with 800 gasoline stations in the Southwest, for $1.18 billion. With the purchase, Tesoro will control 27 percent of California's refining capacity. From Bloomberg:

BP, based in London, previously announced its intent to sell the California refinery as well as a plant in Texas City, Texas as part of a plan to shed $38 billion of assets by the end of next year. The transaction announced today brings the total amount of BP asset sales to $26.5 billoin since the start of 2010. "This is a decent price, though a bit less than we thought they might get," said Jason Gammel, an analyst at Macquarie Capital Europe Ltd. in London.

Heat wave continues: Very hot today, perhaps a few degrees cooler by mid-week, and then warming up again for the weekend - all of which will continue to put strains on the state's power grid. So far, though, it's been holding up. (NBC4)

What's wrong with Convention Center?: Too many local trade shows and not enough major conventions that draw visitors from out of town. From the Downtown News:

The smaller events, which don't come with the hotel and tourism business, accounted for 89% of attendees last year, according to a city-commissioned study by KPMG, KNN Public Finance and Crossroads Consulting Services. By contrast, the centers in Anaheim and San Diego last year drew close to 40% of their attendees for trade shows. The majority of guests in those cities were there for citywide events.

Backing Walmart: LAT editorial says the City Council should turn down an effort to freeze new chain-store development in Chinatown.

Rather than produce plans and then live by them, the City Council instead regularly intervenes to write special rules depending on the political circumstances. In the case of this project, the space at the intersection of Cesar E. Chavez and Grand avenues has been zoned for a grocery store for more than 20 years. It sits vacant today, and Wal-Mart proposes merely to comply with what the local zoning rules call for -- a grocery store, one of about 33,000 square feet. Under a rational set of zoning and development plans, a developer who proposed to do exactly what the plan calls for would be welcomed and the project would proceed without delay. That, unfortunately, is not how Los Angeles works.

Box office report: "The Bourne Legacy" took the top spot over the weekend, with a $40.3 million debut. The political comedy "The Campaign" opened at No. 2 with $27.4 million, and "The Dark Knight Rises" was in third-place. (AP)

More by Mark Lacter:
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Another rugged quarter for Tribune Co. papers
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Those awful infographics that promise to explain and only distort
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Further fallout from airport shootings
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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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