Sat02132016

News

SPLAT targets data, outreach as airplane noise continues

SPLAT targets data, outreach as airplane noise continues


Graphic courtesy of Don Gardner
Activists claim that a new SFO flight path leaves a “sound shadow” that impacts Los Altos and Los Altos Hills.

Sky Posse Los Altos Team – more simply known as SPLAT – seeks to squelch the noise...

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Schools

Los Altos High student-run charity plans '5 Gallon Gala'

Los Altos High student-run charity plans '5 Gallon Gala'


Courtesy of Lia Evard
Water by Youth members gave Egan students a chance to carry a 40-pound Jerry can, to see how difficult it is to obtain water in developing nations.

Water by Youth, a club at Los Altos High School, is making a splash by pla...

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Community

What would you do with a box of cookies? Local Girls Scouts help Tanzanian orphanage

What would you do with a box of cookies? Local Girls Scouts help Tanzanian orphanage


Courtesy of Alicia Madden
Sales of local Girl Scout cookies support service projects, such as funding an orphanage in the village of Mto wa Mbu in Tanzania.

Girl Scout cookies – whether you think of them as a treat, a tradition or a diet comp...

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Sports

Scoreless spells sink LA boys

Scoreless spells sink LA boys


Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Los Altos High point guard Nolan Brennan attempts a shot in Friday’s game versus Palo Alto. He scored eight points in the loss.

There have been several games this season in which the Los Altos High boys basketball t...

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Comment

New 'York' values

New 'York' values


Hughes

 

As we have witnessed California suffer through one of its worst droughts in history over the past few years, all of us, I’m sure, have been keenly aware of our surroundings and have done a small part in trying to conserve wa...

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Special Sections

Getting a charge  out of the Volt

Getting a charge out of the Volt


Courtesy of Chevrolet
The 2016 Chevrolet Volt can be driven up to 50 miles on the power stored in its batteries.

Just five years ago, we wondered in this column what the power supply would be for the car of the future. Gasoline, diesel, electric ba...

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Business

Nearing V-Day: Shops stock sweets, treats

Nearing V-Day: Shops stock sweets, treats


Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Los Altos resident Ella Roosakos, 11, with her mother, Gail, puzzles over which Gourmet Works sweets to buy as a valentine for Ella’s friend.

The gift-buying rush isn’t exclusive to Christmas. It may jump over...

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People

ALAN RODNEY MILLS

ALAN RODNEY MILLS

Alan Rodney Mills, PhD, 83, of Los Altos passed away peacefully on Saturday, January 30th, 2016. He was born in Rochdale, England in 1933 and came to California in 1962. He was a proud alumni of Manchester Grammar in England, University of Liverpoo...

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Stepping Out

PYT 'Gets Famous'

PYT 'Gets Famous'


Lyn Flaim Healy/Spotlight Moments Photography
Renee Vetter of Palo Alto, left, and Megan Foreman of Los Altos star in Peninsula Youth Theatre’s “Judy Moody Gets Famous.” Performances are scheduled Friday and Saturday.

Peninsula...

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Spiritual Life

A time to prepare: Fasting for Lent isn't limited to food

 

Today is Ash Wednesday, which in the Christian calendar marks the beginning of Lent – the 40 days of preparation for Resurrection Sunday, otherwise known as Easter.

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Inside Mountain View

New right-to-lease ordinance promises relief for renters

New right-to-lease ordinance promises relief for renters


Mountain View Tenants Coalition/Facebook
Residents gather in the fall to protest Mountain View’s rising rents. Rent relief is on the way in the form of a new ordinance.

A controversial Mountain View law requiring landlords to provide lease opt...

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Is the stock market still your friend?

The Federal Reserve said interest-rate policies were still needed to invigorate the U.S. economy, so it will continue buying $85 billion in bonds every month to keep long-term rates low. The immediate result: The Dow Jones industrial average reached a new all-time high.

Although the past few days have been volatile, the trend still appears bullish. So what options do you have as an investor? You can continue what you’re doing in an uncertain market, you can sell your stocks and not worry about any crashes or shortfalls – there are legitimate reasons for concern in the weeks ahead – or you can continue to buy while the market achieves new highs and take your chances while the getting is good.

If you reached your financial goals, then getting out could be a good move, but analysts expect stocks to outperform bonds and cash over the next year.

The Stock Market Trends & Securities Report, Dow Theory Forecasts, noted that if an investor missed 40 of the market’s biggest days over 20 years (1987-2007), the return would have totaled 3.98 percent. Staying in the market fully invested, the average annualized return would have been 11.82 percent.

After October’s solid results, with the S&P 500 and the Dow reaching new highs, changing course would require difficult decision-making.

Two Town Crier “50” high-flying stocks made news last week.

• Facebook Inc. (FB; 48.66) stock gained 2.4 percent Thursday and continued to rise as the market declined. Why? Facebook reported quarterly earnings of 25 cents per share, beating an estimated 19 cents per share, while revenue increased 60 percent to $2.02 billion, compared with $1.26 billion a year earlier.

Not all is rosy with the Menlo Park-based company, however. It appears that the fever youth once had for Facebook is cooling off. Daily use by the teen demographic declined in the third quarter from the second quarter. Other age groups, though, more than made up for the decline.

The primary reason for the impressive growth is mobile sales. While Facebook was not in the mobile ad business when it went public in May 2012, ads now account for nearly half of the company’s $1.8 billion in advertising revenue. Mobile and business advertising rose because Internet users are increasingly using their smartphones and tablets.

Facebook will probably be around for a long time. Although it is losing some of its younger users, it has far more monthly users than Twitter and Linkedln combined.

The upgrade and downgrade history for Facebook stock has changed since the company went public in 2012. Since April 5, analysts have recommended a buy, with only a few holds. The high target price is $68, with a low of $24.90. Logical advice would be to buy on a dip.

• LinkedIn Corp. (LNKD; $224.14) is currently trading around its peak value and five times its 2011 initial public offering of $45. Investors are beginning to question whether the high valuation is correct and whether the price will continue to escalate.

LinkedIn is the largest professional networking site, with revenue for the fourth quarter approximately $414-$420 million, according to Bloomberg. Sales in the third quarter climbed 56 percent to $393 million. The company reported a net loss of $3.36 million, or 3 cents per share in the latest quarter.

As the Mountain View-based company builds its revenue from smartphones and tablet viewing, mobile activity already accounts for more than half of its sales from product-sponsored updates. LinkedIn has 4,241 full-time employees.

The Talent segment, in which LinkedIn charges a subscription fee for access to its database of recruiters, provides its main source of revenue. It has launched new products in Sponsored Updates and University Pages in the past two months. Faced with decelerating growth, LinkedIn seeks new users overseas to generate additional revenue.

The stock’s upgrade and downgrade history since February has been a buy. The 30 brokers following the company deem the high target price $300 and the low $195.

The company is a bit risky to buy right now, but on a pullback it could make investors happy, so buy on the dip.

Clyde Noel is a Los Altos Hills resident and longtime investor in stocks.

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