Early Briefing 08.21.07

There's turmoil in the markets but what we really want to talk about is this summer's ultimate status handbag. Only five are for sale in North America---one of which has been claimed by a mystery buyer here in the Washington area. Would you buy the $52,500 Louis Vuitton Tribute Patchwork if you could? See the story here.

OK, back to our regular programming. Here's some of the local business stories in today's newspaper.

* Capital One closed a residential mortgage loan unit, but it wasn't the only company to take steps to adjust to the widening credit crunch. Arlington's Friedman, Billings, Ramsey Group said it sold about $4.95 billion in mortgage-backed securities at a loss of about $57 million to help regain its footing. See story.

* JBG Cos., a longtime Washington area development company, is partnering with a San Francisco real estate investment firm to build or expand several dozen projects throughout the area.

The new venture is to have a portfolio of 93 office, retail, hotel and residential properties with an estimated value of $10 billion at completion, according to Chevy Chase-based JBG and its collaborator, MacFarlane Partners. See story.

* RCN of Herndon said its largest shareholder, Tudor Investment, sold its 18 percent stake in the cable television provider. Tudor's reason for selling was not released.

* With great fanfare, Maryland Public Television yesterday launched the state's first public all-Spanish-language channel, featuring an array of educational and entertainment programming. But it could be a while before most Comcast subscribers in Montgomery and Prince George's counties are able to tune in.

As the digital station made its debut in the Baltimore region, officials from Comcast, the Washington area's dominant cable provider, hadn't committed to a starting date in the two Maryland jurisdictions with by far the largest Hispanic populations.

The debut in Prince George's and Montgomery, where more than two-thirds of the state's Latino population lives, could occur as late as 2009, MPT officials said. See story.

By Dan Beyers  |  August 21, 2007; 5:43 AM ET
Previous: Capital One Closes Wholesale Mortgage Unit | Next: Richmond Fed President Offers Outlook on Economy


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