Thu02112016

Business & Real Estate

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 January and flirt into February, but retail goes full-throttle as Feb. 14 approaches.

With the frenzy already reaching downtown Los Altos, merchants are recommending that shoppers purchase those Valentine’s Day gifts now.

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Volatile oil still controls stock market

The oil slick was evident again Thursday with volatile pricing on the stock market. Stocks reversed out of early losses to close up 79.92 as oil fluctuated back to $30.

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The return of the tontine: A means to diversify retirement income

Prior to the 1990s, a retiree could typically count on guaranteed income from company pensions lasting until he or she passed away. But by 2015, few private companies still offered them.

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'Where's My Refund?' tool gives taxpayers ability to track status

Taxpayers seeking the status of their refunds now can check on the process using their computers or smartphones.

The IRS, which reportedly issues 90 percent of refunds in under 21 days, offers the “Where’s My Refund?” tracking tool, accessible at IRS.gov/Refunds or via the IRS2Go phone app.

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Transactions

Mountain View

732 Borello Way, L. Rogers to A. Mobasher for $1,755,000

938 Clark Avenue No. 48, E. Lundberg to D. & P. Wadors for $925,000

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Realtors optimistic about home sales in 2016

The housing market celebrated its best year in nearly a decade in 2015.

In 2016, realtors expect existing-home sales to expand, but at a more moderate pace due to pressures on housing affordability and economic growth, according to National Association of Realtors Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. Yun expects total existing-homes sales this year to grow between 1 and 2 percent (5.3 million to 5.4 million) and prices to increase between 5 and 6 percent.

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Businesses on Main Street make moves


Alicia Castro/Town Crier
Several stores on Main Street in downtown Los Altos are in the midst of changing hands.

In the coming months, Main Street will welcome several new businesses to fill empty storefronts.

Jennifer Quinn, the city’s economic development manager, said merchants and brokers have voiced concern with recent downtown vacancies and turnovers.

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