Welcome to California Inc., the weekly newsletter of the L.A. Times Business Section. The stock market's post-election rally ran out of steam last week, but there was some milestone economic news Friday: The unemployment rate fell to the lowest level in nearly a decade -- 4.6% -- as the economy added 178,000 net new jobs in November. The latest jobs report virtually assures that Federal Reserve officials will raise a key interest rate this month. One caveat: average hourly earnings slipped by 3 cents to $25.89, the first decline in nearly a year. The leaders of CBS and Viacom will appear Monday on the same stage -- but not at the same time -- amid speculation that the two companies will merge.
Welcome to California Inc., the weekly newsletter of the L.A. Times Business Section. Investors on Monday will feel a tailwind from Friday's announcement that consumers increased their spending last month by the most in 2½ years. Retail sales rose 1.6% in September, after slipping 0.1% in August. Auto sales jumped 3.6%, the most since March 2015. Gas sales climbed 5.8%, the most in 4½ years.
Welcome to California Inc., the weekly newsletter of the L.A. Times Business Section. While much of Monday's market buzz will likely continue to center on Snap, which went public Thursday, let's not overlook that California's economy started 2017 on a strong note, with employers in January adding 9,700 jobs and the jobless rate dropping to 5.1%. The Golden State keeps outpacing the national economy in job growth, adding jobs at a year-over-year rate of 2%, compared with the national rate of 1.6%. Election day: Los Angeles voters will go to the polls Tuesday to cast ballots on various issues with economic implications. Getting lots of attention is Measure S, which would put new restrictions on the construction of housing, shops and offices.