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News

LA Council race adds 3 new faces to city politics

LA Council race adds 3 new faces to city politics


The Town Crier chronicled the first election of Los Altos City Council incumbent Jarrett Fishpaw in 2010 and documented the Los Altos candidacy of Jean Mordo, who volunteered as a longtime public servant in Los Altos Hills before moving to the flat...

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Schools

St. Simon launches web-based learning management system

St. Simon launches web-based learning management system


Courtesy of St. Simon Parish School
St. Simon fifth-grader Matthew Cummins uses a laptop in class last week. The school’s cloud-based Schoology system boosts organization and collaboration.

Families at St. Simon Parish School in Los Altos laun...

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Community

Los Altos to celebrate 100 years of library use with 'Centennial Faire'

Los Altos to celebrate 100 years of library use with 'Centennial Faire'


Town Crier File Photo
The Los Altos main library is among the more popular branches in the county library district system, set to celebrate 100 years.

In 1914, Babe Ruth made his debut with the Boston Red Sox, wages hit $5 per day, the first ste...

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Sports

Eagles eye another stellar season

Eagles eye another stellar season


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Los Altos High outside hitter Carmen Annevelink, right, goes for the kill Thursday against Palo Alto, as teammates Sarah Tritschler, left, and Lulu Kishton prepare to play defense. The Eagles won the match in straight ga...

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Comment

Torok, Walter, Dave for MVLA board: Editorial

There’s really nothing major you can criticize about the Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District. It offers a diverse array of effective programs for all types of students. Its instructors, with few exceptions, are outstanding.

Howe...

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Special Sections

'Funabout' Fiat

'Funabout' Fiat


Photos courtesy of Fiat
The 2014 Fiat 500e uses 29 kilowatt-hours per 100 miles, which the engineers claim is the equivalent of 116 mpg of gas use. It has a sticker price of $33,095.

If you believe in climate change, would love to see alternat...

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Business

App developer eyes First Friday as testing ground

App developer eyes First Friday as testing ground


Ted Fagenson

An East Bay app developer is testing his newest creation in downtown Los Altos.

Ted Fagenson, co-founder of Skrownge (pronounced “scrounge”), told the Town Crier that he’s beta testing his mobile gaming app this week ...

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Books

From story to bookstore: Local journey highlights Halloween

From story to bookstore: Local journey highlights Halloween


Courtesy of Dee Ellmann
Jenny Hurwick self-published her picture book last month after decades of storytelling.

During her years working as a teacher and a Los Altos mom, Jenny Hurwick loved to tell stories. One tale she crafted for her son just se...

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People

VINCENT (TIM) MURPHY JR.

VINCENT (TIM) MURPHY JR.

July 27, 1953 – August 12, 2014

Native Los Altan died Medford, OR. Graduated Bellarmine Prep. Married Josephine Domino, 1950. Licensed Auto Mechanic, Private Pilot, skilled Computer Scientist. Tim “could fix anything”. Afflicted with cancer 2001. ...

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Travel

Taking a Turkey trek: Winging it during the World Cup

Taking a Turkey trek: Winging it during the World Cup


Rich Robertson/Special to the Town Crier
The sun sets over the Aegean Sea in Bodrum, Turkey, left.

Tours that whisk you from Istanbul to Bodrum in 11 days are as plentiful as souvenir hawkers in Turkey, but traveling from the Blue Mosque to Topkapi ...

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Stepping Out

'Gypsy' on its way out

'Gypsy' on its way out


Chris Berger/Special to the Town Crier
Alison Koch of Los Altos plays Dainty June in “Gypsy.”

This is the final weekend to catch the Sunnyvale Community Players production of “Gypsy” at the Sunnyvale Theatre. The musical is slated to close Sund...

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Spiritual Life

Ugandan pastor visits U.S. to raise support for children's ministry

Ugandan pastor visits U.S. to raise support for children's ministry


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Herman Lukwago educates children in Uganda.

Imagine life if your father had 25 children and you were raised in poverty in rural Uganda.

Now imagine that you and your siblings were orphaned at an early age and you ass...

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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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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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