Harrah’s, MGM Mirage push for endorsements

Two of the gambling industry’s leading companies are courting Mulvane city officials, hoping to land endorsements they need to keep proposed casino projects alive.

Harrah’s Entertainment and MGM Mirage, both based in Las Vegas, can’t compete for a state contract to build and operate a casino for the Kansas Lottery in Sumner County unless they have the endorsement of local officials.

So far, the Sumner County Commission hasn’t endorsed proposals they’ve made for hotel-casino complexes at the Mulvane exit of the Kansas Turnpike. But the county commission’s endorsement won’t be necessary if Mulvane annexes their proposed sites and the city backs their projects.

The City Council annexed the Harrah’s site Monday; MGM Mirage has asked to have its site annexed, too.

Harrah’s and MGM Mirage’s proposals are competing with two other projects proposed off the turnpike’s Wellington exit, 14 miles to the south. The county commission endorsed the Wellington proposals last month.

Those proposals are competing with Wellington projects proposed by Penn National Gaming, of Wyomissing, Pa., and Marvel Gaming of Las Vegas. Penn National’s proposal is $365 million, and Marvel’s is $390 million.

Winter-blend fuel demand lifts ethanol

Ethanol in Chicago advanced on higher demand for winter-blend gasoline in mandated and discretionary markets.

New York, Chicago and other major cities require the additive in gasoline at all times. Phoenix, Las Vegas, Denver and several other cities mandate use only during cold-weather months.

Denatured ethanol for February delivery rose 0.8 cent, or 0.4 percent, to settle at $2.21 a gallon at 1:15 p.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade.

In spot-market trading, ethanol on the U.S. Gulf Coast surged 6 cents, or 2.5 percent, to $2.51 a gallon, the highest since it fetched $2.60 on March 16. In New York, it rose 2.5 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $2.385; on the West Coast, the fuel advanced 2.5 cents, or 1 percent, to $2.45, the highest since March, 30.

Ethanol in the Chicago spot market slid 2 cents, or 1 percent, to $2.25 a gallon.


Target says chief exec will retire on May 1

In a long-expected move, Target Corp. said Wednesday that Chief Executive Bob Ulrich will retire May 1 and be replaced by President Gregg Steinhafel.

Ulrich, 64, will remain as chairman of the nation’s second-largest discount retailer through the end of fiscal 2008. He has been with the company that became Target since 1967 and has been chairman and CEO since 1994.

The company said that during Ulrich’s tenure, it has nearly tripled its sales and U.S. stores, and profits have jumped almost ninefold.

Sierra Health plans layoffs at LV office

Sierra Health Services is planning layoffs at its Southwest Medical Associates physicians’ practice in Las Vegas.

The company will release about 30 workers from Southwest Medical Associates’ 1,200-worker staff within 60 days to 90 days, said Peter O’Neill, Sierra Health’s vice president of public and investor relations.

The reduction in force results from the phase-out of a federal “social HMO” program that allowed a handful of health plans around the nation to provide special services to elderly patients. The services, which included transportation to and from doctors’ appointments, in-home domestic care and counseling, aimed to keep seniors out of assisted living and in their homes.

Targeted in the layoffs are Southwest Medical Associates’ geriatric department and managers related to the social HMO program. O’Neill said Southwest Medical plans to absorb the program’s geriatric patients into its primary practice.

Southwest plans to cut 57 round-trip flights

Southwest Airlines Co., concerned that fuel prices are rising and the U.S. economy is slowing, will cut 57 round-trip flights from its schedule while adding service in higher-demand markets such as Denver.

The carrier will reduce daily flights from some of its largest markets, including Chicago, Las Vegas and Phoenix, without eliminating service between any cities. Daily departures from Denver will rise by 18, or 32 percent, starting May 10 as part of 40 total additions, the airline said Wednesday.

Southwest, the busiest carrier at McCarran International Airport, has trimmed 2008 capacity growth to as much as 5 percent from 8 percent because of concern that travel demand may decline in a weaker economy.

Southwest is dropping, at most, two daily trips between affected cities.

British Airways plans to launch new airline

In a move that could heat up competition for transatlantic passengers, British Airways said Wednesday it would launch a new airline in June that would offer nonstop flights between New York and cities in the European mainland.

The London-based carrier said the new airline, which would cater to business and affluent leisure travelers, would be named OpenSkies and begin with service either to Brussels, Belgium, or Paris.

If British Air picks Paris, the route would come on the heels of a new nonstop service that its European archrival, Air France, is to begin in March between Los Angeles International Airport and London’s Heathrow Airport, British Airways’ main hub.


Profits up 76 percent for aluminum maker

Aluminum producer Alcoa said Wednesday its fourth-quarter earnings soared 76 percent, buoyed by the pending sale of its packaging and consumer businesses.

Net income rose to $632 million, or 75 cents per share, for the three months ended Dec. 31, from $359 million, or 41 cents per share, during the same period a year earlier.

The earnings included a favorable restructuring adjustment and tax benefit totaling $323 million, or 38 cents per share, mostly stemming from the company’s recent agreement to sell the packaging and consumer businesses.

Revenue fell 5.7 percent to $7.39 billion from $7.84 billion.


Treasury prices decline after Fed official talks

Treasury prices slid Wednesday after a Federal Reserve official predicted stronger economic growth .

The benchmark 10-year Treasury note dropped 0.09 points to 103.75 with a yield of 3.79 percent, up from 3.78 percent in late trade Tuesday, according to BGCantor Market Data. Earlier in the day the 10-year yield declined to 3.77 percent, its lowest standing since June 3, 2005.

MGM Grand Plans To Add Retail And Dining To Its Strip Facade
MGM Grand President and Chief Operating Officer Scott Sibella said executives are “discussing redeveloping that entire frontage of the building out to the Las Vegas Strip.” (Todd Prince/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Boyd Gaming planning new corporate campus
Casino operator Boyd Gaming Corp. has filed plans to build a new corporate campus. The plans call for two 10-story office buildings and a six-level parking garage in the southwest Las Vegas Valley. Boyd Gaming operates The Orleans, the Suncoast, downtown's California Hotel and other properties. The new headquarters would be just a mile from its current main office building.
Bellagio Conservatory transformed to celebrate Year of the Pig
The Bellagio Conservatory Team transformed the 14,000 square foot conservatory to commemorate Chinese New Year, the holiday that marks the end of the coldest days of winter. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
CES 2019: Intro uses sound to connect people
Intro, a startup that is part of the Future Worlds Accelerator in the UK, has an app that uses ultrasonic sound to find people and companies nearby.
CES 2019 Video: CES wraps up another year
Time-lapse video of the action at CES 2019 in Las Vegas. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
CES 2019: Create your own beauty products
Beauty Mix by BeautyByMe is a product that lets you create your own cosmetics and beauty products. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
CES 2019: Picobrew’s home brew machine
Picobrew brings automation to homebrewing. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
CES 2019: Surviving CES
What it's like to spend four days working the mammoth tech convention. (Jason Bracelin/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Haier’s smart home
Haier presented smart home technology at CES 2019.
CES 2019 VIDEO: Foldimate makes laundry day easy
Foldimate has created a machine that will fold your laundry for you. Just feed it anything you need folded and it will do the rest. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
CES 2019: Opte device corrects skin spots
Opte from Proctor and Gamble is a device for correcting spots and freckles from skin. It analyzes the area for spots and then covers them with a serum of matching skin tone. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Circa hotel-casino in downtown Las Vegas unveiled
Derek Stevens reveals Circa hotel-casino in downtown Las Vegas. He plans open by the end of 2020. (K.M Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Circa, new casino coming to Fremont Street
Casino owner Derek Stevens announces his new property Circa, coming to Fremont Street in downtown Las Vegas in late 2020. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Dreenk My Oeno makes wine suggestions
At CES 2019 in Las Vegas, the Dreenk My Oeno tells you all about wine.
Polaroid One Step Plus camera unveiled at CES 2019
Polaroid has moved into the digital age with its One Step Plus camera with Bluetooth. With the connected app, it turns your smartphone into a remote for the camera, along with filters and features.
Amazon is everywhere at CES 2019 in Las Vegas
Seemingly everything works with Amazon Alexa
LG Smart Mirror helps you dress snazzy
LG’s Smart Mirror is less of a mirror but more of an assistant to help get you looking snazzy. It takes your image and recommends clothes for you or matches existing clothes with new clothes, which can be purchased right from the mirror. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Underwater robots make waves at CES 2019 in Las Vegas
Robosea is a company dedicated to underwater robotics. They produce consumer robots for underwater filming as well as commercial products which can be used for underwater research. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
CES 2019 - Victrola record players spin in Las Vegas
A new spin on an old favorite, Victrola record players are meeting a demand for retro products. The brand is also making furnitures with built-in speakers.
CES 2019: Slamtec robots ready to serve
Slamtec is a robotics company out of China whose goal is to provide solutions for laser localization mapping and navigation. They have created two autonomous robots that can be used in areas such as bars, restaurants and malls. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Mixologiq drink maker appears at CES 2019 in Las Vegas.
This is the Mixologiq drink maker.
CES 2019: Veritable smart garden
Let’s face it; not all of us have green thumbs. And herbs are particularly difficult to grow, considering their constant need for sunshine. Enter the Veritable smart garden from Exky, which does it all for you. (Heidi Knapp Rinella/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Bonnie Springs Ranch near Las Vegas being sold to developer
Bonnie Springs Ranch near Las Vegas is being sold to a developer, set to close in March. Bonnie Springs, west of Las Vegas off State Route 159 — next to Spring Mountain Ranch State Park — spans more than 60 acres and was on the market for $31 million. The developer and his project partner are under contract to buy the ranch and plan to chop it up mostly into custom-home lots. The plans includes a 25-room motel, a restaurant and a 5,400-square-foot event barn.
Bone-conduction headphones form Aftershokz
Aftershokz offers bone-conduction headphones - headphones that don’t go in the ear.
CES Happy Hour party at Hangover Suite at Caesars Palace
Conventioneers mingled during the Hardware Massive CES 2019 Happy Hour Bash at The Hangover Suite at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @KMCannonPhoto
Autonomous Cars and Futuristic Aircraft Rule CES
Day two of CES was dominated by autonomous cars and futuristic aircraft in the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center.
TekNekSavr fights neck problems caused by smart phones
Atiya Syverson invented the TekNekSavr to help fight neck and head problems caused by strains while typing on smart phones. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
New eyeglasses know if you fall and call for help
The French company Abeye has created eye glasses that will detect if the wearer falls and call for help. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Company that creates vibrator-like device claims genders bias against CES
Lora DiCarlo is a women-run start-up that creates a vibrator-like device designed for female pleasure called the Osé. This year they were awarded the CES Innovation Award in the Robotics and Drone Category, but a month later the Consumer Technology Association, which runs CES, rescinded the award and their booth. Haddock and her team believe it is a reflection of gender bias and sexism in an industry with a long history of male domination.
CES-Wagz has new pet products
Wagz has three new products to help create better lives for your pets in a digital world. One is a collar with LTE tracking and an HD camera. Also a smart pet door that only lets your pet in and out. Lastly, a device to humanely keep Fluffy out of certain areas of your home. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
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