TODAY

– August 21, 2014

LinkedIn tool shares user info on iPhone email

(AP) — LinkedIn just gave its users another reason to ensure their resumes are up to date. The online professional network has introduced a mobile feature that shows information about people's careers in emails being read on iPhones.

The tool, called Intro, pulls details from the profiles of LinkedIn's more than 238 million users so the recipient of an email can learn more about the sender.

The information will be limited to what the email senders already allow anyone to be seen on their LinkedIn accounts, unless they already have granted the recipient broader access through a connection on the service.

The feature released Wednesday works with Gmail, Yahoo Mail, AOL Mail and Apple Inc.'s iCloud when any of them are plugged into the iPhone's built-in email app. LinkedIn Corp. plans to update the feature so it also works with Microsoft Corp.'s Outlook.com and Exchange email. It's available at https://intro.linkedin.com/ .

Intro also works on Apple Inc.'s iPad, although the feature isn't tailored for that device. LinkedIn eventually will release a version of Intro designed especially for the tablet format.

LinkedIn imported the technology powering the Intro feature from its acquisition last year of Rapportive, a startup that had already been mining online social networks to include personal information in correspondence sent to Gmail accounts.

Intro is part of LinkedIn's push to make its network indispensable on mobile devices as more people manage their personal and professional lives on smartphones and tablets.

LinkedIn says about 38 percent of the traffic to it networking services now comes through mobile devices, up from just 8 percent in early 2011. LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner predicted Wednesday that mobile devices would be reeling in more than half the service's traffic at some point next year.

As part of its effort to make its network more alluring on mobile, LinkedIn also released a new version of its service's app for the iPad.

LinkedIn's strategy has been paying off since the company went public nearly two-and-half years ago. The Mountain View, Calif. company has consistently been delivering earnings that exceed analyst projections, helping to lift its stock by more than five-fold from its initial public offering price of $45.

The shares shed $3.60 to $241.35 in Wednesday afternoon trading, as the broader markets ticked down..

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Written on 08/21/2014, 2:19 pm by KEN SWEET, AP Business Writer
(AP) — The stock market advanced for a fourth straight day Thursday, pushing the Standard & Poor's 500 index to a record high.
Written on 08/21/2014, 2:18 pm by The Associated Press
(AP) — A report from the Census Bureau is the latest evidence that the rich are getting richer while the poor get poorer. The study released Thursday divided the U.S. into five groups, from wealthiest to poorest. The median net worth of the richest households rose 11 percent between 2000 and 2011, to $630,754. The next-wealthiest group's net worth also rose. But because wealth dropped for the majority of Americans, the median household net worth for the country overall declined about 7 percent to $68,828. The report was compiled using surveys done by the Census. It includes stocks, money in the bank, home values, retirement accounts and other assets in its measurement of net worth.
Written on 08/21/2014, 2:16 pm by The Associated Press
(AP) — Gap Inc. said its profit rose 10 percent in the second quarter as the clothing retailer cut expenses and managed to lift sales. The San Francisco-based company also said it plans to open Gap stores in India next year. The first locations will open in the country's two largest cities, Mumbai and Delhi. Over time, the company expects about 40 franchise-operated locations in India. For the quarter, Gap said sales at established stores around the world were flat. The performance reflected a 5 percent decline at Gap, flat sales at Banana Republic, and growth of 4 percent at Old Navy. That measurement is a key indicator because it strips out the volatility of newly opened and closed locations. Operating and marketing expenses were lower in the quarter. The company raised its full year guidance, and now expects to earn $2.95 to $3 per share, reflecting a 5 cents-per-share gain on an asset sale. For the quarter ended Aug. 2, the company earned $332 million, or 75 cents per share. Not including one-time items, it earned 70 cents per share, or a penny more than Wall Street expected, according to Zacks Investment Research.A year ago, the company earned $303 million, or 64 cents per share. Total revenue rose to $3.98 billion, matching analyst forecasts. Its shares edged up 24 cents to $43.42 in after-hours trading.
Written on 08/21/2014, 2:14 pm by The Associated Press
(AP) — Ford is recalling more than 160,000 vehicles in North America for two safety issues. The largest recall involves 159,395 Focus ST and Escape vehicles from the 2013 and 2014 model years. Ford says their engines could hesitate or stall because of a wiring problem. Ford also is recalling 616 Focus and C-Max cars made earlier this month because their steering gears don't have the proper number of ball bearings. That can potentially degrade the remaining ball bearings and lead to a loss of steering control. Ford says there have been no accidents or injuries related to either recall. The 616 cars are still at dealerships and haven't been sold. Ford Motor Co. will notify customers and repair the vehicles for free.
Written on 08/21/2014, 2:02 pm by Business Journal staff
Valley lodges continued to ride on summer's busy travel season in July, with revenues up nearly $1 million in both the Fresno and Visalia areas. According to a monthly lodging report by STR, the average occupancy rate in the Fresno area stood at 63.4 percent in July. That's up from 61.6 percent in June and slightly above 61.3 percent in July 2013. The average daily rate for a room in the area fell from $86.06 in June to $84.70 in the latest month, still above to $81.31 a year ago. The supply of rooms increased from 307,200 to 317,440 in the month. Fresno area lodges also reported increased revenues of $17.06 million in July compared to $16.3 million the prior month and $15.81 million last year. Tulare/Visalia area lodges saw the average occupancy rate rise to 80.3 percent in July compared to 76.2 percent in June and 74 percent last year. The area's average daily rate stood at $90.58 in the month compared to $91.09 in June and $87.38 a year ago. There were 167,555 rooms available in the Tulare/Visalia area in July, up from 162,150 in June. Revenues also increased, going from $11.26 million in June and $10.83 million a year ago to $12.19 million in July. Statewide, the average occupancy rate stood at 81.5 percent in July, up from 78 percent in June and 80.3 percent a year ago. The average daily rate for a room in California increased to $150.63 in the month compared to $142.95 in June and $139.97 in July 2013. With a combined supply of just more than 15.63 million rooms in the month, lodges in the state reported revenues of around $1.92 billion in July, up from $1.68 billion the month before and $1.74 billion the year before.
Written on 08/21/2014, 1:37 pm by Business Journal staff
WNC, a national real estate investor, announced today the completion of a 47-unit affordable housing community in Tulare. The company provided $6.4 million in low-income housing tax credit equity to fund the project. Kaweah Management Company and the Pacific Companies helped develop the property at 1500 Aspen Avenue.  “We are pleased to deliver The Aspens, a high quality, yet affordable housing option to the families of Tulare that are most in need,” Michael Gaber, WNC executive vice president and chief operating officer, said in a statement.  The property is available to families earning 30 to 60 percent of the area's median income and has both two and three-bedroom units. On-site amenities include a swimming pool, clubhouse with community room, children's playground, picnic area, computer lab, central laundry room and on-site management.  “We couldn't be happier to work with our development partners, including the Pacific Companies, the City of Tulare, the Housing Authority of Tulare County and Rabobank,” Gaber said.  Based in Irvine, California, WNC is a national investor in real estate and community development initiatives. Since being founded in 1971, the company has acquired more than $6.3 billion in assets from a more 1,200 properties across the country. WNC has facilitated the development of 17 low-income community projects since 2000. 
Written on 08/21/2014, 1:24 pm by Business Journal staff
Longtime travel marketing expert Rhonda Salisbury will take over as the new CEO of the Yosemite Sierra Visitors Bureau in Madera County beginning Sept. 1, the organization announced today. Salisbury replaces current CEO Dan Cunning, who will stay on as the new director of special projects development after leading the organization for the last six years. Prior to joining the Yosemite Sierra Visitors Bureau in 2011, Salisbury endorsed Madera County tourism in various capacities over the last 30 years, including her work for a number of properties like The Pines Resort at Bass Lake and Paradise Springs north of Oakhurst. During her time as director of marketing with the visitors bureau, Salisbury has overseen a number of initiatives to promote the Yosemite area to travelers. Among them was the creation of the first annual Yosemite Festival in Oakhurst Community Park to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the signing of the Yosemite Grant by Abraham Lincoln. She also helped land the "Lure & Lore of Yosemite" collection of historic Yosemite memorabilia on display at the Yosemite Sierra Visitors Bureau lobby in Oakhurst through Dec. 31. Salisbury played a key role in developing the award-winning Majestic Mountain Loop in partnership with the Visalia Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Fresno Yosemite International Airport. Launched in January 2013, the promotion offers visitors a comprehensive guide and three-itinerary of California's three national parks. Besides her position at the visitors bureau, Salisbury currently serves as secretary/treasurer of the High Sierra Visitors Council, chair of the Yosemite Grant 150th Anniversary PR/Communications Committee and an ambassador for the California Travel Association. She was previously on the board of directors for the Oakhurst Area Chamber of Commerce and the Bass Lake Chamber of Commerce. The Yosemite Sierra Visitors Bureau manages one of 85 Tourism Business Improvement Districts in California, funded by local hotels via a 2 percent assessment on room nights. In June, the Madera County Board of Supervisors voted to renew the county's TBID for another 10 years to generate around $450,000 annually for marketing activities that promote the mountain area.
Written on 08/21/2014, 12:58 pm by Business Journal staff
The Fresno Regional Foundation announced the opening of its 2014 Environment Grant Cycle, offering $275,000 to community benefit organizations in Fresno, Tulare, Madera, Merced, Kings and Mariposa counties. Of the total, $225,000 is earmarked for nonprofit groups working on smart growth strategies to advance public health, social equity, environmental sustainability and economic growth. Grants range from $5,000 to $50,000 and can be one or two years in duration. Another $50,000 is earmarked to fund programs that focus on restoration of the San Joaquin River. The grants range from $10,000 to $50,000 for one year and are made possible by the Edward K Martin Family Fund. Environment Grants Information Sessions will take place in-person Tuesday, Sept. 9 at 11 a.m. at the Fresno Regional Foundation office at 5250 N. Palm Ave in Fresno, or via webinar on Wednesday, Sept. 10 at 11 a.m. For more information about the Environment grant cycle and to sign up for an information session, visit http://j.mp/frfgrantmaking and click on Environment.
Written on 08/21/2014, 12:30 pm by Associated Press
(AP) — A judge has ordered Target Corp. to stop work on a partly built Hollywood store that exceeded height regulations. The Los Angeles Times reported Wednesday (http://lat.ms/1vlzOhH ) that a Superior Court judge sided with two community groups who claimed the 74-foot-tall structure exceeded a 35-foot limit. The court said the City Council must invalidate permits for the project and halt all construction. Target has asked the 2nd District Court of Appeal to let work proceed. A foundation, walls and a roof have already been built. The size and scale of development is frequently a controversial issue in Hollywood.
Written on 08/21/2014, 12:29 pm by Associated Press
(AP) — A man accused of stealing millions of dollars from Silicon Valley-based trust funds has been sentenced to six and a half years in prison. U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose called Leo Joshua Kennedy's crimes heinous and severe before issuing the sentence on Wednesday. The San Jose Mercury News reports (http://bit.ly/1vmpMwU) that the 62-year-old Kennedy pleaded guilty earlier this year to fraud. He was accused of stealing the money from funds managed by his longtime partner and accountant through her Campbell-based company, Backhouse Fiduciary Services. Federal prosecutors estimate he should pay $13.7 million in restitution. Kennedy apologized during Wednesday's hearing. Victims who spoke urged Koh to impose a harsher penalty.

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Written on 08/21/2014, 12:30 pm by Associated Press
(AP) — A judge has ordered Target Corp....
Written on 08/21/2014, 12:29 pm by Associated Press
(AP) — A man accused of stealing...
Written on 08/21/2014, 12:25 pm by Associated Press
(AP) — California's record drought...
Written on 08/20/2014, 2:13 pm by Associated Press
(AP) — State auditors have found...

Latest National News

Written on 08/21/2014, 2:19 pm by KEN SWEET, AP Business Writer
(AP) — The stock market advanced for a...
Written on 08/21/2014, 2:18 pm by The Associated Press
(AP) — A report from the Census Bureau...
Written on 08/21/2014, 2:16 pm by The Associated Press
(AP) — Gap Inc. said its profit rose 10...
Written on 08/21/2014, 2:14 pm by The Associated Press
(AP) — Ford is recalling more than...