Scott London admitted giving a friend inside information about KPMG clients.

KPMG partner who gave tips to golf buddy sentenced for insider trading

A former partner with accounting giant KPMG was sentenced to 14 months in federal prison for giving confidential information about his firm’s clients to a golfing buddy, who used it to make more than $1 million in profits trading stocks.

Scott London, 51, pleaded guilty to insider trading last year, admitting that he gave confidential information about KPMG clients, including Herbalife Ltd. and Skechers USA Inc., to his stock-trading friend several times from October 2010 to  May 2012.

U.S. District Judge George Wu issued the sentence Thursday in Los Angeles. He also ordered London to pay a $100,000 fine. 

Defense attorney Harland Braun had argued for a sentence of 6 to 12 months, noting that his client had already paid dearly for his crime: losing his $900,000-a-year job, his reputation and a host of KPMG friends who are not permitted to talk to him.

The prosecutor in the case, Assistant U.S. Atty. James A. Bowman, said three years was appropriate because of the significant...

Southwest Airlines passengers get their boarding passes at Bob Hope Airport in Burbank. Travel agents oppose a bill that would change the way airfares are advertised.

Travel agents oppose effort to erase taxes and fees from airfare ads

A bill that would allow airlines to advertise fares without including taxes and fees would "deceive" travelers about the true cost of flying, according to a trade group for the nation's travel agents.

The proposed federal legislation, which is supported by the nation's airline, allows carriers to advertise base fares with extra fees and taxes shown separately.

The bill would negate a U.S. Department of Transportation rule that took effect in 2012 and requires that all advertised fares show the full cost of a flight, including taxes and fees.

Airlines oppose the rule, saying they want travelers to see how much of the total cost of flying comes from fees and taxes imposed by government.

Some passenger fees are imposed by the airlines themselves, such as fuel surcharges.

“We cannot stand by while anti-consumer legislation is allowed to sail through Congress and unravel protections put in place by the DOT with no input from the traveling public,” said Zane Kerby, president and...


Live chat: Moving in with your parents at age 50

It's not just 20-somethings who are moving in with their parents.

At a time when the sluggish economy has sent scores of young adults back home, older people are quietly moving in with their parents at twice the rate of their younger counterparts.

The surge reflects the grim economic reality that has taken hold in the aftermath of the Great Recession, as middle-age people struggle with issues such as extended unemployment.

Live chat: Join us here at 11 a.m.

Join us for a live video chat at 11 a.m. PDT to discuss this dynamic. Business reporter Walter Hamilton, who wrote about this trend, will be joined by Debbie Rohr, a woman who has been forced by economic necessity to move back in with her mother.

For seven years through 2012, the number of Californians age 50 to 64 who live in their parents' homes swelled 67.6% to about 194,000, according to the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research and the Insight Center for Community Economic Development.

The jump is almost exclusively the result...

Zimmer Holdings shares were up more than 14% after it announced Thursday that it would acquire orthopedic products company Biomet in a deal valued at $13.35 billion. Pictured: Overall Thursday morning trading at the New York Stock Exchange.

Zimmer to buy Biomet amid flurry of billion-dollar medical deals

Orthopedic products maker Zimmer Holdings on Thursday announced it will acquire Biomet Inc. in a deal valued at $13.35 billion, including assumption of debt, the companies said.   

The proposed acquisition follows a flurry of billion-dollar deals by pharmaceutical and medical device companies.

PHOTOS: Best and worst countries to grow old in

This week Swiss multinational company Novartis AG, maker of Excedrin, announced a restructuring of its businesses with GlaxoSmithKline that included the sale of GSK's oncology products to Novartis for $14.5 billion. Activist investor Bill Ackman and Canadian firm Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. on Tuesday unveiled details of their $45-billion bid for Irvine pharmaceutical company Allergan Inc., which makes the popular Botox wrinkle treatment.

The acquisition of Biomet is expected to close in the first quarter of 2015. The two companies reported revenues that combined totaled $7.8 billion in 2013. The consolidated company is projected to...

Juicy profits in the stock market have helped the wealthiest Americans become even wealthier.

Rich getting richer: Gap between 1% and 99% deepens

The wealthy are getting even wealthier – in part because they’re so wealthy to start with.

That’s the upshot of new research, which shows that the richest 1% of Americans derive huge profits from capital gains, stock dividends and other types of business- or investment-related gains.

In other words, rich people are making a lot of money on their money.

Anyone, of course, can benefit from stock-related gains. But the rich have benefited a lot more, in part because they have higher incomes that enable them to invest more.

PHOTOS: 10 most expensive cities in the world

The divergence is likely to exacerbate income inequality in coming years, according to the analysis by the Economic Policy Institute.

The analysis found that the share of “income from wealth” going to the top 1% surged to 54% in 2010 from 33.5% in 1979. It was based on data from the Congressional Budget Office.

In 1979, the bottom 90% had 36.2%, according to the Economic Policy Institute. The 9%...

Postal workers plan more protests Thursday at more than 50 Staples locations in 27 states to oppose a partnership between the office supply company and the U.S. Postal Service to operate retail counters at the retailer's stores. Above, a protest in Atlanta last month.

Postal workers union to protest Staples-USPS partnership in 27 states

Members of the American Postal Workers Union are launching protests Thursday in 27 states to decry a partnership between the U.S. Postal Service and office supply company Staples Inc. to run postal counters at its retail stores. 

The agreement between the Postal Service and Staples, announced in November, created a pilot program to operate 82 postal counters at Staples locations across the country. The quick-service counters will be staffed by Staples employees. 

Organizers plan to demonstrate at a Staples location in downtown Los Angeles on Thursday, one of four protests planned in California. Of the 83, locations, 32 are in California; none are in Los Angeles.

The postal workers union leadership have criticized the program, saying it will pave the way for privatization of post office jobs, a charge Postal Service officials deny. 

It is "taking away good, stable jobs and replacing them with low-wage, high-turnover jobs," Mike Evans, the union's California president, said in a...

Fixed mortgage rates rose a bit this week but are still a bargain by historical standards. Above, a home for sale in Los Angeles.

Freddie Mac: mortgage rates edge higher, 30-year averaging 4.33%

Fixed mortgage rates edged higher this week, with Freddie Mac reporting that lenders were offering 30-year loans to solid borrowers at an average of 4.33%, up from 4.27% a week ago.

The average for a 15-year fixed loan rose from 3.33% to 3.39%, the McLean, Va.-based home finance company said Thursday.  Start rates for variable-rate loans were unchanged.  

Helped by stimulus measures from the Federal Reserve, the 30-year rate dropped below 3.5% in late 2012, but as recovery set in it rose back above 4.5% by the middle of last year.

It has spent most of 2014 below that level, making mortgage borrowing quite a bargain by historical standards.

QUIZ: How much do you know about mortgage rates?

Most fixed mortgages are packaged up to back bonds that are sold to investors with payment guarantees from Freddie Mac and other government-controlled entities.

These so-called agency bonds are regarded as nearly as safe as securities issued by the federal government, and fixed mortgage rates tend to...

Homes are staying on the market longer in Southern California this spring. Here, prospective buyers tour a house in Highland Park.

Homes selling slower in Southern California. A sign of stability?

In another sign that the hot Southland housing market is throttling down, homes here are staying on the market longer lately.

The share of houses that have been listed for sale for at least two months climbed in the Los Angeles, Orange County, Inland Empire and Ventura regions of Southern California compared with a year ago, according to an analysis by real estate website Trulia.

Thanks to perennially tight supply, Southern California housing markets are still pretty “fast” by historic standards, notes Trulia chief economist Jed Kolko. More than half of all homes in Los Angeles and Orange Counties sold in less than two months -- among the 10 highest rates in the country.

But compared with last year, when prices were significantly lower and the supply of homes for sale was even tighter, the market has slowed a bit. The share of homes on the market for two months in Los Angeles climbed to 44% from 40 a year ago, to 45% from 38% in Orange County and to 53% from 49% in...

TSA's PreCheck program enables fliers who voluntarily offer background information access to a faster screening line.

Only half of Americans say TSA screening makes flying safer

Americans are split on whether airport screening lines make air travel safer.

But at the same time, a majority of American adults worry that faster screening lines for travelers who submit background information might jeopardize airline safety.

The latest measure of the public's attitute on airport security came from a poll of 2,234 adults in the U.S. by the Harris Poll.

It comes only days after a teenage boy slipped undetected onto a Maui-bound jet at Mineta San Jose International Airport.

Half of those who took the poll said the security screening procedures by the Transportation Security Administration make air travel safer. That rate rises to 57% among those who have taken more than five trips in the last year, according to the poll.

Best airlines, worst airlines: JetBlue tops survey as scores slide

But Americans have mixed opinions about TSA's PreCheck program, which enables travelers who submit background information to the government to go through special screening lines without...


Ronald McDonald gets new outfit, takes on Twitter. Still creepy?

Same clown, new clothes: Is that the main takeaway of McDonald’s newest makeover of its brand ambassador Ronald McDonald?

On Wednesday, the Oak Brook, Ill., fast-food giant unveiled a new look for the redheaded clown and announced he'd be featured on McDonald's social media accounts.

Gone are the lumpy yellow jumpsuit and Where’s Waldo-esque sleeves. In its place is something a Weasley twin might wear -- mustard cargo pants and a red-and-white striped rugby shirt. For “special occasions,” there’s a bow tie and a red blazer festooned with golden arches and Ron’s signature.

Top California crops threatened by drought

He still wears gloves. He still clops around in giant red shoes. His substantial hair is still blazingly loud. It might be a bit sleeker, though.

Is he still creepy? Just ask yourself if you’d let him date your daughter.

But if clothes make the man, this one at least has some showbiz pedigree. The character’s new duds were...

A woman who sued the TSA over carrying breast milk onto a plane has won a settlement.

Woman who sued TSA over breast milk wins settlement

A South Bay woman who sued the Transportation Security Administration over the way agents treated her for trying to bring breast milk on a plane said she won a settlement.

The woman, Stacey Armato, said the TSA agreed to pay her $75,000 to settle the suit, as well as retraining all screeners to better treat travelers carrying breast milk.

"That's a big deal," she said in an interview. "I expect a lot of changes."

TSA officials declined to comment, saying the settlement has not been finalized and the agency still has 30 days to request a dismissal.

The suit is based on two incidents that happened in early 2010 when Armato tried to bring containers of breast milk on flights from Phoenix to Los Angeles. She is an attorney who flew regularly between the two cities.

She said she was harassed in the first incident when she asked that TSA agents not put the milk through an X-ray scanner. During the second incident, she produced a copy of the TSA rules to show screeners that the milk should...

Service Employees International Union members and supporters demonstrate against  wage theft by employers in a downtown Sacramento office building housing the California Chamber of Commerce.

Union demands passage of wage-theft bill

SACRAMENTO -- Nearly 100 chanting and placard-waving union members marched to a downtown Sacramento office tower in a staged and futile attempt to serve a $240 million bill on the California Chamber of Commerce.

The "invoice," union officials said, represented the amount of unpaid wages awarded by the state labor commissioner's office to workers that went uncollected from 2008 to 2011.

The Service Employees International Union is sponsoring a bill aimed at preventing so-called wage theft. It's scheduled for a first hearing and vote Wednesday in the Assembly Committee on Labor and Employment. The bill, AB 2415 by Assemblyman Mark Stone (D-Scotts Valley), would allow an employee under some circumstances to record and enforce a lien on an employer's real and personal property for unpaid wages.

"Under current law, even when employees can prove that their employer denied them compensation for their work, frequently they do not receive their wages," Stone told a boisterous crowd of purple-...

as of 04:07PM ET 4/24/2014
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