Monday, October 19, 2012 – 10:00 a.m.

Here’s a recap of news of interest flowing across the transom this past week.

Market skid continued on

The Dow Jones Industrial Average skid of more than 1,000 points continued last week. Most analysts expect a bumpy road ahead as negotiations over avoiding deep federal budget cuts try and get off the ground.

First-Time unemployment claims soar

Interestingly, first-time claims for unemployment benefits fell out of bed last week.

Some of the change was due to Hurricane Sandy. However many of the people affected couldn’t even file claims due to obvious logistical issues.

The number blew past the critical 400,000-level for the first time in months.

Last week, the Labor Department reported claims climbed 78,000 to 439,000. The less volatile 4-week average climbed to 11,750 to 383,750.

October retail sales fell

Retail sales fell in October by 0.3%. A decline of 0.1.% was forecast.

The largest drop was in auto sales.

San Bernardino Mayor won’t seek reelection

This one is a no-brain-er.

Pat Morris, Mayor of the bankrupt city of San Bernardino says he won’t seek reelection.

Good idea, Pat.

In all fairness, Morris had already indicated, some time ago, that he would not run again.

So far, the only politicos sticking their finger in the hot water are Council members Wendy McCammack and Chas Kelley.

San Bernardino County quietly researching supervisor-elect conflicts

San Bernardino County is quietly looking at related case law and government codes that may interfere with Supervisor-elect James C. Ramos’ ability to hold office. The county, which is of the belief legal challenges may come forward after Ramos takes office on November 4, is being cautious.

Ramos, who spent $1.4 million in his campaign effort, defeated Supervisor Neil Derry in a November 6 runoff.

Sources say Ramos was apparently concerned enough with the prospect of conflict problems, should he prevail, that he resigned his position as chairman of the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians.. The general belief was that any conflict of interest would be cured if he resigned his position.

That assumption may have been flawed.

Bimbo likely to pursue Twinkie

Mexican company Grupo Bimbo, the world’s largest maker of bread, will likely move to acquire the assets and franchise of Hostess Brands.

Hostess, who was ran into the ground by its employee unions, closed last week.