Mon10202014

News

Campaign finance reports show lots of loans, few outliers

Campaign finance reports show lots of loans, few outliers


Ellie Van Houtte/ Town Crier
Campaign yard signs are just one expenditure for candidates during election season.

Election finance filings are in, and Los Altos appears to be hosting a few financially lopsided races.

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Schools

Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation

Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Bullis Charter School students wear their school spirit clothing to greet their mascot Oct. 3 in celebration of being named a National Blue Ribbon School.

Blach Intermediate, Egan Junior High and Bullis Charter schools ea...

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Community

Sports

Spartans run wild(cat) on Eagles

Spartans run wild(cat) on Eagles


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mountain View High running back Austin Johnson goes for a big gain after evading Los Altos High defensive tackle Phil Alameda in Friday’s game. Johnson scored two touchdowns for the Spartans.

After unveiling its wildc...

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Comment

Logan, McClatchie, Peruri for LASD board: Editorial

This is a crucial time for the Los Altos School District. Its leadership faces the challenge of balancing enrollment growth versus maintaining the small, neighborhood schools that make it a very popular district to attend. The district must also adap...

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Special Sections

City's minimum-wage hike earns mixed reviews: Raise to $10.30 an hour meets with approval – and concern

City's minimum-wage hike earns mixed reviews: Raise to $10.30 an hour meets with approval – and concern


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Tandava Waldon, left, manager of East West Bookstore on Castro Street in Mountain View, works with a customer. Waldon said the recently approved minimum-wage hike will have little impact on his business. “It’s not such a...

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Business

Delay Social Security? An easy way to decide

One of the most heatedly debated questions regarding Social Security is when to start.

You have the option of initiating benefits as early as age 62 or as late as age 70. The longer you wait, the larger the monthly payment you will receive over your...

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Books

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mimi Sommers, who works at a Los Altos dentist’s office, recently wrote a children’s book.

A local dental hygienist recently published a book that aims to ease parents and children during a sometimes anxious e...

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People

SUZANNE MONICA DIMM SPECHT

SUZANNE MONICA DIMM SPECHT

Suzanne Monica Dimm Specht passed Tuesday, Sept. 9th at the age of 84. Sue was born on April 21, 1930 in Portland, Oregon. After graduating from the University of Oregon in with a degree in Music, Sue taught in a little town called Clatskanie, Oreg...

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Travel

Los Altos resident's visit to North Korea proves enlightening

Los Altos resident's visit to North Korea proves enlightening


Courtesy of Sally Brew
North Korea is home to many monuments honoring its “Dear Leaders,” left.

In August, I traveled for 11 days with MIR Corp. to North Korea, a fascinating country that is almost completely cut off from the rest of the world. ...

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Stepping Out

'Trovatore' takes the stage in Palo Alto

'Trovatore' takes the stage in Palo Alto


Courtesy of José Luis Moscovich
West Bay Opera’s production of “Il Trovatore” is slated to open Friday night in Palo Alto and run through Oct. 26.

West Bay Opera’s production of “Il Trovatore” (“The Troubadour”) is scheduled to open this weekend...

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Spiritual Life

Magazine

Local events add color to autumn calendar

Local events add color to autumn calendar


Van Houtte/town crier Visitors make their way through the Children’s Alley.

As Los Altos’ signature Chinese Pistache trees exchange their summer green for vibrant hues of yellow, orange and red in the fall, an abundance of local events also ad...

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Dow takes backseat after 10-day rally

After the Dow Jones industrial averages closed higher for 10 straight days, a market pullback was not surprising, because bear markets often begin when earnings and dividends are at all-time highs.

Dividends for the S&P 500 hit a record high as well and could trend higher this year, as big banks are expected to increase their payouts soon in response to the Federal Reserve’s latest round of stress tests.

U.S. equities have pushed up their run for 10 consecutive days without a major consolidation since the start of the year, a result of funds flowing out of money markets and fixed incomes to equities. This kind of trend doesn’t change easily, and we can look for more of it.

Companies are doing better than expected and stockpiling money hand over fist. There is also hope that the Fed will continue printing money with urgency until unemployment falls below 6.5 percent. A shift from this policy could rattle the market and bring down equity prices. Sooner or later, a correction will occur – and it may be a good thing, to keep the market affordable.

Although interest rates are ridiculously low and have a bullish effect on the market, many investors remain skeptical because of continued gridlock in Washington, D.C.

Two Town Crier “50” companies made headlines last week.

• Microsoft Corp. (MSFT; $28.22) was fined $732 million by the European Union for failing to comply with an antitrust pact concerning its Internet browser. Some versions of the Windows operating system omitted a screen that allowed users to select a default Web browser. Microsoft blamed the violation on a glitch, which impacted the stock share price.

In other news, Microsoft agreed to sell its online advertising program – Atlas Advertising Suite – to Facebook for an undisclosed sum. The move highlights Facebook’s intention to overtake Google as the U.S. leader in online display ads.

Microsoft has a market cap of $233.82 million, with shares up 5.3 percent year to date. The stock currently offers a 3.3 percent dividend yield. Most analysts consider Microsoft a long-term buy or, at worst, a hold.

• LSI Corp. (LSI; $6.79), which designs, develops and markets storage and networking semiconductors worldwide, came across a new outlet for supplying chips to base stations in the disk-drive industry and is ready to break out on the upside. The company recently signed a deal with NetApp Inc. that could make it a game changer for how applications handle data in the future.

LSI boasts a projected earnings-per-share growth rate of 13 percent over the next five years. LSI stock is currently trading 25 percent below its 52-week high.

Recently analysts have downgraded the stock from “outperform” to “market perform.” The high market price is $10, with a low target of $7. While Deutsche Bank has downgraded the stock from a buy to a hold, no analyst has recommended a sell.

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