Thu04242014

Business & Real Estate

Remodeling: An investment worth making

A recent industry report concluded that remodeling could lead to high returns for those planning to sell their homes.

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For the skin they're in : Shared interest in organic skin care leads duo to form company


Ellie Van Houtte/town Crier
Nancy Newsom, left, and Kit Gordon started Botanic Organic in 2011 after they discovered a shared passion for creating organic, handmade skin-care products. The company now offers more than 15 products for adults and infants.

Kit Gordon and Nancy Newsom discovered their shared passion for creating organic, plant-based skin-care products in an unlikely place – yoga class.

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Is April a good month for investors?

The weather the first week of April wasn’t all sunshine, but for the past 50 years on Wall Street, April is known as the best-performing month. With the Dow Jones industrial average down 0.7 percent in the first three months of 2014, investors are hoping the fourth month lives up to its reputation.

Brushing aside widespread concerns about lower corporate profits and high stock valuations, the Dow Jones transportation average and the S&P 500 began April at new all-time highs. Even the Dow industrials rallied within a few points of the Dec. 31 all-time high of 16,576.66. Investors should consider anything above those numbers another bullish trend.

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Out of the Box: Los Altos-based company files for IPO, seeks to raise $250 million


Town Crier
Los Altos cloud storage company Box Inc. realeased financial information about a planned public offering March 24. The company listed $169 million in losses last year, with revenue at $124 million. File Photo

The local face of cloud storage showed its hand last week, sharing financial information about its approach to online file management.

The Los Altos-based Box Inc., located at 4440 El Camino Real, published plans for an initial public offering March 24, detailing the opportunities and risks it faces in the race to dominate cloud sharing. The company is looking to raise up to $250 million, adding to the more than $400 million generated in earlier rounds of fundraising, which most recently valued the company at more than $2 billion.

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Chamber joins inaugural regional Business XPO


Town Crier
Los Altos Chamber of Commerce President Julie Rose opted to join the regional XPO effort to showcase local businesses to a larger audience. File photo

The Los Altos Chamber of Commerce threw a curveball when it comes to hosting its annual Business EXPO in 2014 – by not hosting a local one at all.

According to chamber President Julie Rose, the Los Altos organization is joining forces with other area chambers – including Mountain View, Palo Alto, Cupertino and Sunnyvale – to host the first regional Silicon Valley Chamber Business XPO.

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Dow trading in wide range again

After two days of downward volatility by Cisco Systems Inc. and IBM Corp., the Dow Jones industrial average traded in a narrow range last week. The Dow gained well over 110 points early Friday, but it was back to zero by noon.

Both of these Town Crier “50” stocks fell more than 1 percent to lead the Dow’s losing components. With Cisco, IBM, Microsoft Corp. and other companies aging, is there a changing of the guard in the technology industry?

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Who should own your 529 plan?

By Artie Green

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