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News

Hills man arrested on molestation charges

Hills man arrested on molestation charges

Gregory Helfrich

Updated 11:28 a.m.:

Santa Clara Sheriff’s detectives have arrested a Los Altos Hills man they suspect repeatedly molested a child decades ago.

Detectives arrested Gregory Helfrich, 54, on a warrant at his Old Page Mill R...

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Schools

Local AAUW gives gift of science to junior high students

Local AAUW gives gift of science to junior high students


Courtesy of Jessica Harell
Blach Intermediate School seventh-grader Paris Harrell, who loves science and animals, recently received a scholarship from the local branch of the AAUW to attend Tech Trek camp.

It’s not every day that a junior hig...

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Community

At 98, former language teacher remains a lifelong learner

At 98, former language teacher remains a lifelong learner


Federici

Longtime Los Altos resident Mario Federici, who turned 98 Feb. 24, is a man of many languages. He shared his knowledge with thousands of students during his long career as a teacher.

Federici was born and raised in Italy, where he stud...

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Comment

Attend an event, get involved, have fun: Editorial

You don’t have to run for city council to get involved in the community. Sometimes it can be as simple as attending a Los Altos event. You’ll have plenty of opportunities, as the May and June calendars are bustling with activity.

The Dow...

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Special Sections

Racing around Monterey

Racing around Monterey


Gary Anderson/Special to the Town Crier
The easy handling of the VW Golf R, above, makes for an ideal ride along the Big Sur coast.

 

When automotive journalists are asked to list their favorite places in the world to drive, Monterey alway...

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Business

'Steampunk' eatery toasts local libations

'Steampunk' eatery toasts local libations


Courtesy of Eureka
Eureka, a new restaurant in downtown Mountain View, highlights local craft beer and whiskeys on a menu of food spanning from sea to farm.

Craft beer and fancy whiskeys headline the menu at Eureka, the new restaurant that opene...

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People

Stepping Out

PA Players seek escape in 'Into the Woods'

PA Players seek escape in 'Into the Woods'


Courtesy of Palo Alto Players
The Baker’s Wife, left, and Cinderella’s erstwhile Prince stand out in the Palo Alto Players production of “Into the Woods.”

Little Red Riding Hood sets forth at the outset of “Into the...

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Spiritual Life

Los Altos United Methodist Church service salutes Heifer International

Los Altos United Methodist Church service salutes Heifer International


Courtesy of Los ALtos United Methodist Church
Hidden Villa will bring some of its farm animals to Los Altos United Methodist Church Sunday to support the nonprofit Heifer International.

Los Altos United Methodist Church is scheduled to salute th...

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Fed action boosts stock market

With the economy showing signs of improvement, the Federal Reserve started its stimulus pullback and Wall Street investors went crazy, pushing up the Dow Jones industrial average nearly 300 points Dec. 18.

The Fed will trim its $85 billion monthly bond purchases by $10 billion beginning in January and keep long-term rates down. By keeping rates down, the Fed indicates its support of stocks that pay a much larger yield than bonds, including utilities and telecoms.

The stock market has enjoyed a wonderful 2013, fueled by the Fed’s low rate policy. Keeping rates low through bond purchases helps maintain low interest rates, which encourages borrowing and spending.

In his recent press conference, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke said he could foresee the bond-purchasing program coming to an end altogether by late next year. However, we are hopeful the economy will continue to show progress. In an effort to keep market rates stable, the Fed will be in no hurry to raise short-term interest rates.

Two Town Crier “50” stocks made news recently.

• Intel Corp. (INTC; $25.18) was included in Barron’s “10 Favorite Stocks for 2014.” Barron’s reasoned that the chip giant could surprise Wall Street next year as concerns about personal computers begin to fade.

There are signs the PC market is bottoming, and Intel is moving aggressively into tablets and smartphone chips. Its manufacturing shift might pay off with chips that have faster processing speeds and lower power needs.

At $24, Intel stock trades for 13 times projected 2014 earnings of $1.90 a share and yields a dividend of 3.7 percent. Numerous analysts view Intel as a buy. Credit Suisse analyst John Pitzer sees Intel earning $2.50 in a few years, with a $30 price target.

• Safeway Inc. (SWY; $32.86) will get competition from Amazon, as the world’s largest online retailer plans to expand its grocery delivery business in Safeway’s backyard.

Safeway – a Fortune 100 company and one of the largest food and drug retailers in North America based on sales – operated 1,406 stores in the U.S. with annual sales of $37.5 billion in 2012.

Earlier this year, Safeway announced its decision to exit the Chicago market and redouble its efforts in operating areas where business is stronger. In November, Safeway reported that the company had completed the sale of assets of Canada Safeway to a wholly owned subsidiary of Empire Co. Ltd.

The Pleasanton-based company’s board of directors met recently and declared a regular cash dividend of 20 cents per share payable Jan. 9 for stockholders who owned the stock Dec. 19.

Deutsche Bank in September upgraded Safeway stock to a buy after a prior hold. The majority of analysts suggest a hold. The median target price for Safeway stock is $35, with a high of $45.

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

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