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Monday, June 22, 2015

Today's Equipment Leasing Headlines

Archives, June 22, 2007
Wildwood Closes Its Doors
Top Ten Stories June 16-June 18
(Most Often Opened by Readers)
FDIC Cases Against Failed Bank Directors & Officers
  26 to Date, compared to High in 2012 of 369
Two More Added: Top 25 Most Influential Lawyers
   in Equipment Finance and Leasing 
  “Thank You Notes”
Career Crossroad---By Emily Fitzpatrick/RII
Help Wanted --- Leasing Industry Ads
  Four Positions
The Consequences of a Creditor Filing a Bad
  Involuntary Bankruptcy
    By Tom McCurnin, Leasing News Legal Editor
Leasing 102 by Mr. Terry Winders, CLFP
“Change of Location”
Specialty Funding Group 2015 Best of Albuquerque Award
   in the Equipment Leasing Service Category
Equipment Leasing & Finance Industry Confidence Drops
  63.0 in June, from May index of 67.5
Irving, California  Adopt a Dog
Service Classified Ads

News Briefs---
Nevada County, CA lenders found guilty of fraud
Sister and brother facing 30 years in prison
Paris Air Show: Leasing Companies Order Big at Airbus
Leasing Companies Buy More Aircraft than Several Airlines Combined
Shortage of railroad boxcars has shippers fuming
boxcars in service fell by 41% in the past decade
Bank of Greece warned bankers of 'difficult' day if no debt deal
A Reckoning for Greek Brinkmanship
For five months embarking on a major expansion of public spending
Washington fears losing Greece to Moscow
Obama Quite Concerned
How SurveyMonkey Is Coping After the Death of Dave Goldberg
"This is going to hurt"

Broker/Funder/Industry Lists | Features (writer's columns)
Top Ten Stories Chosen by Readers | Top Stories last six months (Be Careful of Doing Business)
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Archives: June 22, 2007
Wildwood Closes Its Doors

“It is with much regret that we announce the closing of Wildwood Financial Group, Ltd. effective June 30, 2007 due to the death of our founder Bob Baker, CLP.

“Following the decision to close, the staff has been asked to wrap up operations and close the office ending the week of June 22nd.

“To all of our clients, funding sources, and business consultants, we appreciate your prayers and support through the good years and during this most difficult time.”

The Staff at Wildwood Financial Group, Ltd.

Mona Janes, CLP
Tracy Galibert
Donna Fite, CLP
Mary Ann Pompe
Tabitha Heinz
Kimberly Willen

In 1995, after being in the finance and leasing industry for over 30 years, the late Bob Baker, CLP, formed the Wildwood Financial Group, Ltd. The concept of Wildwood was created by accident. Bob was a frequent speaker conducting seminars and workshops at various leasing association conferences. After a Bob’s sessions at these workshops, several companies approached him to do in-house training.

He grew this concept to $34,950 for training, and follow-up, helping graduate place leases. He was the main contact, knowing what went where and why. He also brought members into leasing associations. In 1995, he won the United Association of Equipment Leasing membership contest with 27 new members in a several month period. He also probably brought an equal number into the growing National Association of Equipment Leasing Brokers. He wanted his graduates to join leasing associations, network, find sources and make new friends themselves.

In September of last year he purchased assets of Leasing Institute of America (LIA) of Salt Lake City, Utah. The company was owned by ACC Capital and Amembal Associates.

Mona Janes
Senior Consultant at BeneTrends, Inc.

Leasing Schools/Franchisors




Top Ten Stories June 16-June 18
(Most Often Opened by Readers)

(1) Position Wanted---Senior Management
           Seeking New Opportunities

(2) California Law Now in Effect Broadens Exemption
  But More Stringent Provisions as to Licensees
         By Tom McCurnin, Leasing News Legal Editor

(3) California Proposed Law Update:
   Third Party Originators: No License Needed
      for Business Loans or Capital Lease
      By Christopher Menkin

(4)New Hires---Promotions in the Leasing Business
        and Related Industries

(5) $1 Million Oregon Leasing Investment Ponzi Scheme
         "Con Within a Con"

(6) Web App with Calculator for Vendors
         One Month Free Trial

(7) Leasing 102 by Mr. Terry Winders, CLFP
 Qualify Lessee's Credit

(8) Two More Added: Top 25 Most Influential Lawyers
          in Equipment Finance and Leasing

(9) Equipment Finance Decision Maker Survey Results:
           Vendor & Small Biz

(10) Case Credit Gets Thrown in the Ditch
           by Kentucky Court
   by Tom McCurnin, Leasing News Legal Editor


FDIC Cases Against Failed Bank Directors & Officers
26 to Date, compared to High in 2012 of 369

Leasing News readers were surprised with the report from the Office of the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP) reports that courts have sentenced to prison 100 bankers, plus senior corporate executives, mortgage modification scammers, real estate developers, brokers, and other defendants for crimes related to TARP and investigated by SIGTARP.

As of May 26, 2015, SIGTARP has produced the following results:

  • Criminal convictions of 182 individuals, 101 already sentenced to prison while others await sentencing
  • Criminal charges filed against 256 individuals, including 167 senior officers
  • Civil charges filed against 66 individuals, including 52 corporate or senior officers, and 67 companies
  • Orders temporarily or permanently banning 93 individuals from working in the banking or financial industry, working as a contractor with the federal government, or working as a licensed attorney

In the meantime, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has sued to date 26 directors and officers "who caused losses to the institution in order to maximize recoveries. These individuals can include officers and directors, attorneys, accountants, appraisers, brokers, or others. Professional liability claims also include direct claims against insurance carriers such as fidelity bond carriers and title insurance companies."

2009 11
2010 98
2011 264
2012 369
2013 316
2014 123
2015 26
Total 1207

Authorized Cases Against
Directors and Officers
Failed Bank

When pursuing professional liability litigation, the FDIC typically engages outside counsel to assist.  Attorneys in the Legal Division manage all legal assignments and litigation, including matters referred to outside counsel, and oversee settlement and litigation strategy.  As a result, the FDIC’s in-house attorneys are always available to discuss all aspects of litigation, including settlement.

As receiver, the FDIC has at least three years for tort claims and six years for breach-of-contract claims to file suit from the time a bank is closed. If state law permits a longer time, the state statute of limitations is followed.

Professionals may be sued for, among other things, either gross or simple negligence. The Supreme Court has ruled that the FDIC may pursue simple negligence claims against directors and officers if state law permits (Atherton v. FDIC). Federal law preempts state law that insulates directors and officers from gross negligence or worse conduct. Bank directors are allowed to exercise business judgment without incurring legal liability.

Not all bank failures result in Director and Officer (D&O) lawsuits. The FDIC brought claims against directors and officers in 24 percent of the bank failures between 1985 and 1992.

From 1986 through 2014, the FDIC and former Resolution Trust Corporation (1989-1995) collected $8.62 billion from professional liability claims. Over that same time, they spent $2.14 billion to fund all professional liability claims and investigations. Early in the process of professional liability claims, expenses will often exceed recoveries due to the costs incurred in handling new investigations. Professional liability program recoveries lag expenses by several years until settlements occur and judgments are awarded.

List of Liability Settlements by State since 2009

Statement Concerning Responsibilities of Bank Directors
 and Officers



Two More Added: Top 25 Most Influential Lawyers
in Equipment Finance and Leasing

New to be added to the List:

Andrew Alper
Thomas V. Askounis

Joe Bonanno, CLFP

James Coston
Kenneth Charles Greene, Esq.
Michael A. Leichtling
Barry Marks, Esq.
David G. Mayer 
Frank Peretore
Ellen Michelle Stern
Michael J. Witt

Jonathan Fleisher is a Toronto, Canada attorney whose practice
focuses on the commercial finance industry with a particular emphasis on innovative cross-border transactions and equipment and asset finance, where he has been recognized as a leading lawyer by the Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory and Best Lawyers. He has particular expertise assisting public and private US commercial finance companies with both establishing operations in Canada and purchasing and selling finance and lease companies, providing both legal and practical business advice.  He is also a prolific writer on topics related to equipment finance and cross-border transactions. Jonathan is the legal editor for Fleet Digest magazine and has completed both the Equipment Finance and Subordinated Debt chapters for Canadian Forms & Precedents. He has also drafted specific guides for US lenders expanding operations to Canada. He is a Director of the Canadian Finance and Leasing Association, Member of the Legal Committee of the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association, member of the American College of Commercial Finance Lawyers.

Kevin Trabaris has extensive experience representing banks, financial companies, equipment lessors, insurers, and other funding and intermediary entities and borrowers in connection with thousands of business financing matters.  He has handled everything from small ticket transactions to billion dollar syndicated loans, real estate financing to asset-based facilities. He is an active member of the Commercial Finance Association, LinkedIn Capital Equipment Leasing Group and Equipment Leasing Professionals Group. He has an excellent reputation among his colleagues.

Past Nominee Full List

Please submit your nomination with at least a paragraph of why the person should be considered one of Most Influential Lawyers in the Equipment Finance and Leasing industry.



“Thank You Notes”
Career Crossroad---By Emily Fitzpatrick/RII

How Important Are Thank-You Notes?


Recently, I worked with a Candidate, who would not follow our advice, (1) sent his thank-you note a week after his interview, and (2) wrote his note in template form (generic). Needless to say, his candidacy ranking fell from #1 to #5. A survey conducted indicated “… more than 75 percent of interviewers say receiving a thank-you note impacts their decision-making process …”  

Candidacy can easily be sabotaged if the thank-you note …
… Is Not Sent Within 24 hours – It’s Imperative to be Timely
If not sending within an acceptable period, it conveys that you are not that interested and that your follow-up skills are lacking (imperative in sales). Remember to collect correct contact (email) information and send each interviewer a follow-up message.
… Contains Errors
Even the smallest error could put you on the chopping block instantly! Make sure you carefully proofread and have others and/or your recruiter review. 
Note: even though there are software programs that identify many errors, they are NOT 100% foolproof.

… Is Generic
You need to differentiate yourself from other candidates. The goal is to demonstrate your capabilities, drive, and interest in the organization and specific position. Take note to tailor every follow-up you send and make sure your message is different for each interviewer.   
… Is Too Long
In drafting your note, keep it succinct. Just highlight main points, address concerns the interviewer(s) may have expressed and reiterate how your professional background would fit within the organization. Feel free to mention an important detail you may have forgotten during the interview.

Contact for other Thank-You Note Dos and Don’ts
Remember to construct your follow-up messages carefully to reconnect with your hiring managers/interviewers in a timely manner in order keep your candidacy in top ranking 

Emily Fitzpatrick
Sr. Recruiter
Recruiters International, Inc.
Phone:  954-885-9241
Cell:  954-612-0567
Invite me to Connect on LinkedIn
Also follow us on Twitter #RIIINFO

Career Crossroads Previous Columns


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The Consequences of a Creditor Filing a Bad
Involuntary Bankruptcy

By Tom McCurnin
Leasing News Legal Editor

DVI Lease Receivables and Lyon Financial Sued Lessee for
Involuntary Bankruptcy, Couldn’t Prove Case, and Was Tagged for
$1 Million Dollars in Attorney Fees.  11th Circuit Affirms. 

Gosh, I just love it when a creditor decides to be “aggressive” without a lot of thought. Often the creditor hires a knuckle dragging Neanderthal collection firm to bash the borrower into submission. The problem with “aggressive” collection strategies is that aggression without thought can be a dangerous proposition. In today’s case the equipment lessor filed an involuntary bankruptcy, lost, and was tagged for $6 million in attorney fees. Thankfully, the 11th Circuit bailed the lessor out for most of the damage, but was still left with a $1 million dollar bill for stupidly filing an involuntary bankruptcy. This case was a complete train wreck for the lessor. 

What Is an Involuntary Bankruptcy?
From the outset, some discussion of what an involuntary bankruptcy is and why it might be used is in order. An involuntary bankruptcy is one where usually three creditors get together and file a petition to force the proposed debtor into bankruptcy. Once in bankruptcy, the bankruptcy trustee can administer assets, sue for fraudulent conveyances, set aside preferential transfers, and other super-powers trustees have. Sounds like a great idea, right? Wrong. 

The involuntary bankruptcy is a two-step procedure, first having to prove the debtor is actually insolvent and second the actual administration of the debtor’s estate. There are also practical impediments, such as getting the trustee to act for the creditors, which often involves the creditors paying for the entire administration of the estate, in advance, which could be hundreds of thousands of dollars. And if the creditors decide to dismiss or the court finds that debtor is not insolvent, the creditors will be on the hook for the debtor’s attorney fees and damages. This is an area in which creditors need to exercise great caution and restraint. 

The Facts
In this case, the borrower is actually the guarantor who was sued. You can file an involuntary bankruptcy against a borrower. It generally takes three creditors to join in the filing. In some instances, one creditor can do it, but usually it takes three to file.

This is a very technical legal area, not easily explained. Hence the reason why Lyon Financial and their idiot lawyers botched the filing.

Beginning in November 2000, Rosenberg’s limited partnerships leased certain medical equipment from DVI Financial Services. Rosenberg executed a personal guaranty. This was a complex, multiple lender financing arrangement, and the leases were assigned to US Bank, the Trustee for the note holders. After DVI filed for bankruptcy in August 2003, Lyon Financial Service took over the servicing obligations with respect to these leases. There were numerous special purpose entities holding the lease obligations which the Court called the “DVI Entities.”

In December 2003, Lyon sued Rosenberg but the parties entered into a settlement agreement, with Rosenberg signing a new guaranty and a confession of judgment. Jane Fox signed the agreement on behalf of Lyon as Lyon’s Director of Operations. Lyon sued Rosenberg again but the action was stayed pending on a determination of the exact amount owed. 

Undaunted, and again through Ms. Fox, the DVI Entities filed an involuntary Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition against Rosenberg in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, claiming $5,363,361.56. This involuntary petition was later transferred to the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Florida. The problem was that Ms. Fox worked for Lyon Financial not the DVI Entities. Thus, she was not authorized to sign the involuntary petition for the petitioning creditors. This was a detail that somehow eluded the lessor and its counsel. 

The Trial Court Rulings
On August 21, 2009, the bankruptcy court granted Rosenberg’s motion to dismiss and dismissed the involuntary petition with prejudice. The bankruptcy court found that the DVI Entities were not eligible creditors of Rosenberg because his 2005 guaranty did not run to the DVI Entities; rather, it ran only to Lyon Financial, as servicer and as agent for Trustee USB. Moreover, the DVI Entities, as pass through entities, lacked standing as a matter of law to file an involuntary petition against Rosenberg. Rosenberg won, DVI and Lyons lost.  Round one to the guarantor. 

In response to the dismissal order, Rosenberg filed an adversary complaint against Fox and the DVI entities to recover his attorney’s fees under § 303 of the Bankruptcy Code and for bad faith. The Bankruptcy Court split the claims. While the jury trial issue as to bad-faith damages was litigated in the district court, Rosenberg’s claims for attorney’s fees and costs under § 303 remained for adjudication in the bankruptcy court. The Bankruptcy Court awarded Rosenberg $1,034,295.45 of Rosenberg’s attorney’s fees and approximately $39,019.37 in costs. In the District Court action, Rosenberg was awarded $1,120,000 in compensatory damages (for emotional distress, loss of reputation, and loss of wages) and $5,000,000 in punitive damages. Round two to the guarantor. 

The 11th Circuit Affirms

The creditors appealed to the 11th Circuit. The court of appeals affirmed, holding that all of the evidence pointed to the fact that Lyon Financial was the de facto petitioning creditor and that Ms. Fox signed the petition. The Court vacated the District Court judgment for the $6,120,000 bad faith judgment, and directed that this be determined by the Bankruptcy Court and remanded the matter. In addition, Rosenberg recovered his attorney fees on appeal, essentially getting fees on fees. 

While the 11th Circuit took away most of the $7,000,000 judgment, it did so only temporarily, and the Bankruptcy Court will hear the bad faith claims.  Rosenberg is, at the minimum, entitled to $1.1 million dollars from Lyon Financial and the DVI Entities and Ms. Fox. Round three technically went to the lessor, but at what cost?  $1 million dollars in damages and attorney fees plus the possibility of more? 

What Are the Take Aways?

What are the lessons for the equipment lessor here?

First, Involuntary bankruptcies are specialized, high risk, proceedings. They are not for clumsy collection lawyers. Any creditor considering such a procedure should engage competent counsel who should advise the client of the requirements and the risks associated with the filing. 

Second, this case should have been settled. At some point, the lessor realized that the involuntary bankruptcy was a really bad idea and poorly executed. The lessor should have thrown some money at this case and made it go away.

The bottom line to this case is that while involuntary bankruptcies may sound like a good idea, but they really should be reserved for the most extreme cases and carefully prepared and executed by competent counsel. 

DVI Rosenberg Case

Tom McCurnin is a partner at Barton, Klugman & Oetting in Los Angeles, California.

Tom McCurnin
Barton, Klugman & Oetting
350 South Grand Ave.
Suite 2200
Los Angeles, CA 90071
Direct Phone: (213) 617-6129
Cell (213) 268-8291
Visit our web site at

Previous Tom McCurnin Articles:


(Terry retired January 1, 2015.  To honor him and his many years of writing for readers of Leasing News, is repeating several of his columns that are still meaningful today. Here is July 16, 2012.)

"Change of Location"

Most leases should carry a requirement that the lessee notify the lessor of any change in location of the equipment. This of course does not apply to transportation equipment or equipment that will be used at a variety of locations. All other equipment should have its location noted on the lease with a statement that it cannot be moved to a new location without giving the lessor notice. This does not mean that they need the lessor’s permission to relocate the equipment, but there are many reasons to have knowledge of the change, including personal property tax or other license requirements.

Occasionally a change in location may involve a sublease or a use by a sister corporation or perhaps just an unauthorized user. Some equipment is actually sold and the buyer does not care or know enough to check UCC filings.

Mergers happen and equipment is moved to a new location where it can be better utilized. If this occurs, because of a name change, you need an assumption agreement to transfer responsibility to the new company.

Occasionally mergers happen without the knowledge of the lessor and rents continue to come in but the equipment is sold because it is no longer needed and the new company is unaware that it is leased.

Equipment over and above a certain amount determined by you should be scheduled for an on sight inspection, if not each year, than on a routine basis.

Especially if the equipment is moved. Due to the quite enjoyment clause required by Article 2A you need to inform the lessee of your inspection and establish a convenient date. An email, a letter, even a post card (remember them) that request a date to inspect all equipment should be sent out regardless of transaction size and whether or not you intend to conduct the inspection because you may be surprised at the response and it may correct some problems very early. It also puts you in communication with your lessee and provides a marketing opportunity.

Since the current UCC-1 filing requirements are made in the State where your lessee has filed his business papers, it does not require a new filing if the equipment is move out of State. However the new State may not be a State that you are registered to do business and may require some additional work on your part. States have different laws and you need to be aware of that.

I have always believed that placing stickers on equipment with your name, address, and phone number and an ownership statement solves a lot of these problems for lessee’s and others that may not understand this equipment is under lease. This applies to Article 9 leases as well as Article 2A leases. The smaller the equipment and the more mobile it is just increases the need for the lease stickers. It certainly will help you in a bankruptcy court or attempt to repossess the equipment.

Some short form leases fail to include location change language but it is one of the more important clauses and should be articulated by whoever closes your lease and it should be covered in your thank you letter that contains the copy of the lease with all signatures and blanks completed. It is always smart to list some important requirements (in the kings English) that are in the lease (which nobody reads) so the lessee is fully informed. Location is rarely a concern of the lessee so I strongly recommend you mention it in your closing letter. 

Previous #102 Columns:


(Leasing News provides this ad as a trade for appraisals and equipment valuations provided by Ed Castagna)



##### Press Release ############################

Specialty Funding Group 2015 Best of Albuquerque Award
in the Equipment Leasing Service Category

Bob Underwood

Specialty Funding Group has been selected for the 20 1 5 Best of Albuquerque Award in the Equipment Leasing Service category by the Albuquerque Award Program.

Each year, the Albuquerque Award Program identifies companies that we believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These are local companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and our community.  These exception companies help make the Albuquerque area a great place to live, work and play.



### Press Release ############################

Equipment Leasing & Finance Industry Confidence Drops
63.0 in June, from May index of 67.5

Washington, DC,  – The Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation (the Foundation) releases the June 2015 Monthly Confidence Index for the Equipment Finance Industry (MCI-EFI) today. Designed to collect leadership data, the index reports a qualitative assessment of both the prevailing business conditions and expectations for the future as reported by key executives from the $903 billion equipment finance sector. Overall, confidence in the equipment finance market is 63.0, dropped from the May index of 67.5.


Thomas Jaschik, President, BB&T Equipment Finance: “I believe any rise in interest rates will spur activity within the equipment finance industry.  Companies continue to defer capital expenditures as long as possible.  A rise in interest rates will hopefully provide a catalyst to accelerate capital expenditures as costs may rise in the future.”

June 2015 MCI-EFI Survey Comments
from Industry Executive Leadership:

Independent, Small Ticket

David Schaefer, CEO, Mintaka Financial, LLC:
“Competition is robust due to new market entrants. Access to capital is abundant and new channels focused on end users are challenging us to adapt and change. Banks are actively looking to deploy capital. Secured and unsecured loan products are prevalent.”

Bank, Small Ticket

Paul Menzel, President & CEO, Financial Pacific Leasing, LLC:
“We are starting to see signs that both the consumer and businesses are starting to increase spending due to elevated confidence in the economy.  If this ultimately occurs in tandem, we should see accelerating growth in equipment finance in the foreseeable future.”

Bank, Middle Ticket

Adam D. Warner, President, Key Equipment Finance and Immediate Past Chairman of the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA):
“The revised first quarter GDP showed economic contraction and economists have revised down their growth projections for the full year.  This will likely mean that interest rates will be kept at these historically low levels for longer than expected, further pressuring interest margins.”

June 2015 Survey Results:

The overall MCI-EFI is 63.0, an easing from the May index of 67.5.

  • When asked to assess their business conditions over the next four months, 17.9% of executives responding said they believe business conditions will improve over the next four months, down from 30.8% in May.  82.1% of respondents believe business conditions will remain the same over the next four months, up from 69.2% in May.  None believe business conditions will worsen, unchanged from the previous month.
  • 21.4% of survey respondents believe demand for leases and loans to fund capital expenditures (capex) will increase over the next four months, down from 34.6% in May.  78.6% believe demand will “remain the same” during the same four-month time period, up from 65.4% the previous month.  None believe demand will decline, unchanged from May.
  • 25% of executives expect more access to capital to fund equipment acquisitions over the next four months, down from 38.5% in May.  75% of survey respondents indicate they expect the “same” access to capital to fund business, up from 57.7% in May.  None expect “less” access to capital, down from 3.9% who expected less access to capital the previous month.
  • When asked, 57.1% of the executives reported they expect to hire more employees over the next four months, an increase from 53.9% in May.  35.7% expect no change in headcount over the next four months, down from 42.3% last month.  7.1% expect to hire fewer employees, up from 3.9% who expected fewer in May.
  • 3.6% of the leadership evaluate the current U.S. economy as “excellent,” relatively unchanged from 3.9% last month.  96.4% of the leadership evaluate the current U.S. economy as “fair,” and none rate it as “poor,” both unchanged from the previous month.
  • 28.6% of the survey respondents believe that U.S. economic conditions will get “better” over the next six months, a decrease from 34.6 % who believed so in May.  67.9% of survey respondents indicate they believe the U.S. economy will “stay the same” over the next six months, an increase from 65.4% in May.  3.6% believe economic conditions in the U.S. will worsen over the next six months, an increase from none who believed so last month.
  • In June, 35.7% of respondents indicate they believe their company will increase spending on business development activities during the next six months, a decrease from 50% in May.  60.7% believe there will be “no change” in business development spending, an increase from 46.2% last month.  3.6% believe there will be a decrease in spending, relatively unchanged from 3.9% who believed so last month.

Why an MCI-EFI?

Confidence in the U.S. economy and the capital markets is a critical driver to the equipment finance industry. Throughout history, when confidence increases, consumers and businesses are more apt to acquire more consumer goods, equipment and durables, and invest at prevailing prices. When confidence decreases, spending and risk-taking tend to fall. Investors are said to be confident when the news about the future is good and stock prices are rising.

Who participates in the MCI-EFI?

The respondents are comprised of a wide cross section of industry executives, including large-ticket, middle-market and small-ticket banks, independents and captive equipment finance companies. The MCI-EFI uses the same pool of 50 organization leaders to respond monthly to ensure the survey’s integrity. Since the same organizations provide the data from month to month, the results constitute a consistent barometer of the industry's confidence.

#### Press Release #############################


(Leasing News provides this ad “gratis” as a means
to help support the growth of Lease Police)


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News Briefs----

Nevada County, CA lenders found guilty of fraud
Sister and brother facing 30 years in prison

Paris Air Show: Leasing Companies Order Big at Airbus
Leasing Companies Buy More Aircraft than Several Airlines Combined

Shortage of railroad boxcars has shippers fuming
boxcars in service fell by 41% in the past decade

Exclusive: Bank of Greece warned bankers of 'difficult' day if no debt deal

A Reckoning for Greek Brinkmanship
For five months embarking on a major expansion of public spending.   

Washington fears losing Greece to Moscow
Obama Quite Concerned 

How SurveyMonkey Is Coping After the Death of Dave Goldberg
"This is going to hurt"

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The 11 Most Expensive Steakhouses in the Country


SparkPeople--Live Healthier and Longer

You Asked: ''What Are Some Ways to Reduce the Sodium in My Diet?''


Baseball Poem

The Batter

From the book

That Sweet Diamond

by Paul B. Janeczko, Carole Katchen (Illustrator)

He approaches the plate,
swinging smoothly
in slow motion
knowing his choice is simple:
swing or not.

As he paws
the back line of the batter's box,
matching concentration and stare
with the pitcher,
he knows
makes failure likely.

Pitcher rocks.

Batter waits.

Then, in the time it takes
a happy heart to beat,



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Phelps wins 200 butterfly at Santa Clara swim meet
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A's co-owner Wolff not interested in sharing Coliseum site with Raiders

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49ers play for field position in Santa Clara politics

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NFL: 3 Potential Landing Spots for Colin Kaepernick

A's co-owner Wolff not interested in sharing Coliseum site with Raiders

Chargers gone? Keep calm, carry on


California Nuts Briefs---

California Pool Construction in Drought
  Could Hit Highest Level Since 2007

California’s trout hatcheries hurt by drought, disease


“Gimme that Wine”

3 decades later, Columbia Valley still defines Washington wine

An extended bloom season for grapes

Napa Valley wine, food company expands in Mendocino County

Large landmark Carmel Valley winery Chateau Julien sells for $12 million, will become new winery.

The Not-So-Pink Plight of Natural Rosé

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Wine Prices by vintage

US/International Wine Events

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This Day in American History

       1610 - In their search for a marketable product, some settlers in the Colonies had begun growing tobacco.  Europeans had acquired a taste for tobacco in the late sixteenth century when the Spanish brought samples from the West Indies and Florida. Initially expensive, it became popular among wealthy consumers. The high price appealed to Virginians, but they found that native Virginia leaf was of poor quality. John Rolfe began experimenting with seeds from Trinidad, which did much better. The first cargo of Virginia-grown tobacco arrived in England in 1617 and sold at a highly profitable 3 shillings per pound. Following Rolfe's success, settlers immediately planted tobacco everywhere- -even in the streets of Jamestown. Company officials, unwilling to base the colony's economy on a single crop, especially one that many people (including King James) considered to be an unhealthy indulgence, tried to restrict annual production to 100 pounds per colonist. Colonists, busy "rooting in the ground about Tobacco like Swine" as one observer reported, ignored these restrictions. But it was only after company rule ended that tobacco planting really surged. Between 1627 and 1669, tobacco exports climbed from 250,000 pounds to more than 15 million pounds. As the supply grew, the price plunged from 13 pence in 1624 to a mere penny in the late 1660s, where it remained for the next half century. What had once been a luxury product thus became affordable for Europeans of average means. Now thoroughly dependent on tobacco for their livelihood, the only way colonists could compensate for falling prices was to grow even more, pushing exports to England to more than 20 million pounds by the late 1670s.
    1611 - After spending a winter trapped by ice in present-day Hudson Bay, the starving crew of the Discovery mutinies against its captain, English navigator Henry Hudson, and sets him, his teenage son, and seven supporters adrift in a small, open boat. Hudson and the eight others were never seen again. Two years earlier, in 1609, Hudson sailed to the Americas to find a northwest passage to Asia after repeatedly failing in his efforts to find a northeast ocean passage. The Discovery later returned to England, and its crew was arrested for the mutiny. Although Henry Hudson was never seen again, his discoveries gave England its claim to the rich Hudson Bay region.
    1633 - Galileo Galilei was forced by the Pope to recant his research that the Earth orbits the Sun.  On Oct 31, 1992, the Vatican admitted it was wrong.
    1774 - The Quebec Act was passed by Parliament. It established a permanent government in Quebec and extended its boundaries south to the Ohio River, to include land contested by several American colonies. For this, it was considered by the colonists to be one of the Intolerable Acts that lead to the Revolutionary War.
    1775 - Continental currency was issued for the first time, totaling $3,000,000.
    1807 - The crew of the British man-of-war, "Leopold," fired upon and boarded the United States frigate "Chesapeake." The commander of the "Chesapeake," James Barron, was court martialed and convicted for not being prepared for action. Along with some others, this incident led to the War of 1812. Eight years after the war, Stephen Decatur, a judge in the court martial, was killed in a duel. The victor of the duel was James Barron.
    1808 – Zebulon Pike (1179-1813) reached the mountain summit that would be named for him.  As a US Army captain in 1806–1807, he led the Pike Expedition, sent out by President Thomas Jefferson to explore and document the southern portion of the Louisiana territory and to find the headwaters of the Red River, during which he recorded the discovery of what later was called Pikes Peak.
    1832 - John Ireland Howe of Derby, CT, obtained a patent for manufacturing pins. He exhibited it at the American Institute Fair in New York City, receiving a silver medal for his contribution to Manufacturing. He later founded the Howe Manufacturing Company and made improvements on his design. It was a great boon to the clothing industry, among others.
    1839 - Cherokee leaders Major Ridge, John Ridge, and Elias Boudinot were assassinated for signing the Treaty of New Echota, which had resulted in the Trail of Tears.  The treaty established terms under which the entire Cherokee Nation ceded its territory in the southeast and agreed to move west to the Indian Territory. Although the treaty was not approved by the Cherokee National Council nor signed by Principal Chief John Ross, it was amended and ratified by the US Senate in March, 1836.  The supporters of Ross, in teams ranging up to twenty-five in number, converged on the houses of John Ridge, Major Ridge, and Elias Boudinot and murdered them.
    1845 – Birthday of Tom Dula (1845-68) in Wilkes County, NC.  A former Confederate soldier, he was convicted of murdering Laura Foster. National publicity from newspapers such as The New York Times turned Dula's story into a folk legend. Dula was tried, convicted, and hung. Considerable controversy surrounded the case and in subsequent years, a folk song was written (entitled “Tom Dooley”, based on the pronunciation in the local dialect), and The Kingston Trio recorded a hit version of the ballad in 1958.
    1846 – Adolphe Sax (1846-94) patented his invention – the saxophone. He had invented the instrument early in the decade, and by the time the patent was granted there were 14 different saxophones – seven designed for orchestras and seven for bands. The saxophones designed for bands are the ones in common use today.
    1847 – The doughnut with a hole was first invented in 1847 by American sea captain Hanson Crocket Gregory.  He claimed to have invented the ring-shaped doughnut in 1847 aboard a ship. Gregory was dissatisfied with the greasiness of doughnuts twisted into various shapes and with the raw center of regular doughnuts. He claimed to have punched a hole in the center of dough with the ship's tin pepper box, and later taught the technique to his mother.  Smithsonian magazine states that his mother, Elizabeth Gregory, "made a wicked deep-fried dough that cleverly used her son's spice cargo of nutmeg and cinnamon, along with lemon rind," and "put hazelnuts or walnuts in the center, where the dough might not cook through", and called the food doughnuts.
    1850 - In San Francisco, a 500-pound grizzly bear was caught today near the Mission Dolores.
    1868 – Arkansas was re-admitted to the union.
    1870 – Congress created the Department of Justice.
    1870 – America’s first boardwalk was built, in Atlantic City.  In the mid-1800s, oceanside resorts and the railroads that provided transportation to them were enjoying a booming success, but they were also gritting their teeth against the problem of sand — it was everywhere! Finally, a solution was found to keep the sand at bay: a walkway made of boards that would lead from town to the beach, helping keep sand out of the tourists' shoes.
    1896 - Dr. Mary Stone (Shih Mai-Yu) graduated from the Medical School of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, becoming the first Chinese woman physician. She founded the Women’s Hospital at Kiukiang, China, under the auspices of the Methodist Foreign Mission and served as its head for 25 years.
    1894 - Legendary magician and escape artist Harry Houdini married Wilhelmina Beatrice Rahne.  (Lower part of: )
    1898 – Adm. Sampson begins amphibious landing near Santiago, Cuba. Lt. Col. Theodore Roosevelt and Col. Leonard Wood led the Rough Riders, a volunteer cavalry regiment, onto the beach at Daiquiri in the Spanish American War.
    1899 - Richard Gurley Drew (1899-1980) was born in St. Paul, MN.  He was an inventor who worked for Johnson and Johnson, Permacel Co., and 3M, where he invented masking tape and cellophane tape.
    1903 – Birthday of Ben Pollack (1903-71) in Chicago.  Dixieland drummer, who owned a “pizza/beer/jazz “ joint on Sunset Blvd in Hollywood, California, with a cover charge. When I was growing up, this was one of best hang outs as those under 18 could get in, and often, we had beer, although we were also not 21. Pollack was a “boom-chick-a-boom” drummer, but played with some of the best and is mentioned in many Chicago jazz era books. Warren Luening, Jr. would sometimes sit in and play trumpet with the band. Pollack really liked his playing, and it may have been one of the reason we were always able to drink beer here.
    1903 – New York Giants Hall of Fame pitcher Carl Hubbell (1903-88) was born in Carthage, MO.  Twice voted the NL’s MVP, a rarity for pitchers, Hubbell was inducted into the Hall in 1947. During 1936 and 1937, Hubbell set the Major League record for consecutive wins by a pitcher with 24. He is perhaps best remembered for his performance in the 1934 All-Star Game, when he struck out five of the game's great hitters and future Hall of Famers in succession: Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Al Simmons, and Joe Cronin.
    1903 – John Dillinger (1903-34) was born in Indianapolis.  His gang robbed twenty-four banks and four police stations.  In the heyday of the Depression-era outlaw (1933–1934), Dillinger was the most notorious of all. The government demanded federal action, and J. Edgar Hoover developed a more sophisticated FBI as a weapon against organized crime, using Dillinger and his gang as his campaign platform to launch the FBI.  Dillinger was gunned down by an FBI team outside a movie theater in Chicago.
    1910 – Dancer, anthropologist, humanitarian, philanthropist
Katherine Dunham (1910-2006) was born in Chicago, IL.
    1912 - The Republican Party under President Roosevelt got into a bitter feud among the various factions of the party, starting out in the open with Roosevelt asking a faction to leave the convention; resulting in a split party.  This basically gave the election to Democratic candidate Woodrow Wilson, who was not that popular but won because of the Republican split.
    1912 – Ty Cobb was pinch hit for in an unusual scenario. With two outs in the 9th, and the Tigers down 11-3, Cobb was nowhere to be found, and George Mullin substituted and flied out to end the game. It turns out Cobb is in the clubhouse showering.
    1915 – Subway service was launched in Brooklyn, the BMT for Brooklyn Motor Transit.
    1918 - A Michigan Central Railroad troop train, after several days shuttling soldiers to New York from Chicago, was deadheading back to the Midwest when it struck the rear of the Hagenback-Wallace Circus train. The circus trained has stopped to have its brake box overhauled in Ivanhoe, Indiana. Fifty-three circus performers were killed. Of the circus animals not killed outright, many that were crippled and maimed had to be destroyed by police officers. The performers, of who only three could be identified, were buried in a mass grave. The engineer, A.K. Sargent, who was accused of falling asleep at the throttle, was tried and acquitted.
    1919 - An F5 tornado struck the town of Fergus Falls, Minnesota. 59 people were killed and 400 buildings were destroyed. Lumber was carried for 10 miles and other debris were found 60 miles away.
    1930 – Babe Ruth tied a Major League record by hitting five homers in two games and six homers in three games. The Yankee outfielder hit three homers in the second game of the doubleheader yesterday, two homers in today's opener and one more in the nightcap.
    1932 - The National League club presidents finally approved players wearing numbers. The AL had started the practice in 1929.
    1933 - Birthday of Dianne Feinstein, born Dianne Emiel Goldman in San Francisco.   She is the U.S. Senator from California since 1992 and the former Mayor of San Francisco. In 1969, she became the first woman to be elected president of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors and then succeeded the murdered mayor George Moscone, serving 1978-88. She was defeated in a try for Governor of California and then was elected U.S. Senator in 1992.
    1936 - Singer, songwriter and actor Kris Kristofferson was born in Brownsville, Texas.   Kristofferson earned a Rhodes Scholarship to Oxford University, where he studied at Merton College. While at Oxford, he was awarded his Blue for boxing and began writing songs. With the help of his manager, Larry Parnes, he recorded for Top Rank Records under the name Kris Carson. His first success as a songwriter came when Roger Miller recorded "Me and Bobby McGee." That song was turned into a million-seller by Janis Joplin in 1971. And Sammi Smith sold a million with "Help Me Make It Through the Night," another Kristofferson song. By this time, Kristofferson had begun his career as a singer, and in 1972, his single, "The Silver-Tongued Devil and I," was certified gold. His other successes have included the single, "Why Me," and the albums "The Silver-Tongued Devil and I" and "Jesus Was a Capricorn." In 1985, Kristofferson, along with Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson, recorded the hugely successful "Highwayman" single and album. There was a "Highwaymen Two" album in 1990 with the same cast.
    1937 - At Chicago’s Comiskey Park, Joe Louis won the World Heavyweight Championship title by knocking out James J. Braddock in the eighth round. Louis retained the title until his retirement in 1949.
    1938 - Exactly one year after the Braddock fight, Louis met Germany’s Max Schmeling, at New York City’s Yankee Stadium. Louis knocked out Schmeling in the first round.
   1938 - Joe Louis knocks out "Aryan supremacy” claimant Max Schmeling.
    1940 - During World War II, Adolf Hitler gained a stunning victory as France was forced to sign an armistice eight days after German forces overran Paris.
    1941 - Over 3 million German troops invaded Russia in three parallel offensives, in what is the most powerful invasion force in history.
    1942 - A Japanese submarine shelled Fort Stevens, Oregon, at the mouth of the Columbia River. In a plan, balloons were launched with bombs that landed in Oregon, but the military along with the news media never mentioned the fires or damaged that occurred.
    1944 - The GI Bill of Rights was signed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. One of the most important governmental measures of the post-World War II era, the bill was designed to provide greater opportunities for returning war veterans. An important result of the bill was the training of almost 8 million veterans.
    1942 – The Pledge of Allegiance was formally adopted by Congress
    1945 - Howard Kaylan, one of the two lead singers of the Turtles, was born in New York City. The Turtles had hit singles with "It Ain't Me Babe" in 1965 and "Happy Together" and "She'd Rather Be With Me," both in 1967. Some members of the Turtles wanted the group to be more than a band that made hit singles. The resulting dissension led to the Turtles' breakup in 1968. Lead singers Howard Kaylan and Mark Volman joined the Mothers of Invention, and then embarked on a duo career as Flo and Eddie.
    1947 - 12 inches of rain fell in 42 minutes at Holt, Missouri, setting a new rainfall intensity world record. That record was tied on January 24-25, 1956, at the Kilauea Sugar Plantation in Hawaii, as their state record was established with 38 inches of rain in 24 hours.
    1947 – Ewell Blackwell just missed pitching back-to-back no-hitters when Eddie Stanky of the Brooklyn Dodgers singled with one out in the 9th inning. Blackwell won, 4-0, his ninth straight win, to improve to 11-2. Stanky's hit ended Blackwell's hitless-inning streak at 19. He had no-hit the Boston Braves on June 18th and won 16 consecutive games in 1947.  Cincinnati’s Johnny Vander Meer is the only Major League pitcher to throw consecutive no-hitters.
    1949 - Top Hits
“Again” - Gordon Jenkins
“Some Enchanted Evening” - Perry Como
“Bali Ha’I” - Perry Como
“One Kiss Too Many” - Eddy Arnold
    1950 - Prominent figures in the music industry, including Leonard Bernstein, Aaron Copland, Lena Horne, Pete Seeger and Artie Shaw, were named publicly as suspected Communist sympathizers in the infamous publication, “Red Channels: The Report of Communist Influence in Radio and Television”.
1957 - Top Hits
“Love Letters in the Sand” - Pat Boone
“Teddy Bear” - Elvis Presley
“I Like Your Kind of Love” - Andy Williams
“Four Walls” - Jim Reeves
    1959 - Eddie Lubanski bowled 24 consecutive strikes, that is two perfect games, back-to-back, in a bowling tournament in Miami, Florida.
    1959 - Chuck Berry's "Memphis" is released.
    1959 - Starting its fourth week at the top of the Tunedex was "The Battle of New Orleans" by Johnny Horton. The song spent six weeks at number one. It was Horton’s only number one record and million copy seller. He had other big hits with movie music like "Sink the Bismarck" and "North to Alaska" from the film by the same title, starring John Wayne. Horton, from Tyler, Texas, married Hank Williams' widow Billie Jean Jones. On November 5, 1960, Johnny Horton was killed in a car crash.
    1959 – The Dodgers’ Sandy Koufax fanned 16 Phillies to set a new record for a night game, winning, 6-2.
    1962 - St. Louis Cardinal Hall of Famer Stan Musial broke the late Ty Cobb's major league record of 5,863 career total bases.
    1963 - "Fingertips - Pt 2," by Stevie Wonder, was released, and became his first number one single on August 10th. From 1963 to 1987, Wonder had 46 hits on the pop and R&B music charts, eight of which made it to number one.
    1963 - The Safaris' "Wipe Out" is released.
    1963 – Phillies’ CF Tony Gonzalez played his 200th straight errorless game to help rookie Ray Culp beat Roger Craig and the Mets, 2-0.
    1964 - The United States Supreme Court voted that "Tropic of Cancer," Henry Miller’s controversial book, could not be banned.
    1965 - Top Hits
“I Can’t Help Myself” - The Four Tops
“Mr. Tambourine Man” - The Byrds
“For Your Love” - The Yardbirds
“Ribbon of Darkness” - Marty Robbins
    1968 - Mason Williams' "Classical Gas" is released.
    1968 - The Jeff Beck Group, with Rod Stewart and Ron Wood, made its US debut at the Fillmore East in New York City. Stewart was said to have had such a severe case of stage fright that he hid behind the speakers for the first couple of songs. The band, which had a major influence on the heavy metal groups that followed, broke up after two LPs and several North American tours.
    1969 - The Cuyahoga River caught fire in Cleveland, drawing national attention to water pollution, and spurring the passing of the Clean Water Act and the creation of the EPA.
    1969 – Singer/actor Judy Garland died at age 47.
    1970 - President Nixon signed the 26th amendment, lowering the voting age to 18
    1972 - Hurricane Agnes, a category 1 storm, made landfall near Apalachicola, Florida on the 19th, moved northeast, joined up with an upper level disturbance, and unloaded anywhere from 10 to 20 inches of rain across Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and New York during the period from the 20th to the 25th. Extreme flooding was the result -- the worst in U.S. history. A dike was breached at Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania and the resultant wall of water destroyed much of the city. Total damage was $3.5 billion and 122 lives were lost.
    1973 - Top Hits
“My Love” - Paul McCartney & Wings
“Playground in My Mind” - Clint Holmes
“I’m Gonna Love You Just a Little More Baby” - Barry White
“Kids Say the Darndest Things” - Tammy Wynette
    1976 – Randy Jones pitched the Padres to a 4-2 win over the Giants, and tied Christy Mathewson’s 63-year-old NL record by going 68 innings without issuing a base on balls. He received a standing ovation from the home crowd to end the 7th. His streak ended when he walked C Marc Hill leading off the 8th.
    1977 – Convicted Watergate conspirator and former Attorney General John Mitchell started a 19-month term in an Alabama Federal prison.
    1981 - John Lennon's murderer, Mark David Chapman, pleads guilty to his crime and is sentenced to 20 Years to Life in New York's Attica State prison. He has since been up for parole five times, and has been denied every time.
    1981 - A young woman from Lubbock, TX, was struck by lightning. The bolt of lightning struck just above her right shoulder near her neck, and passed right to left through her body, tearing her warm-ups, causing her tennis shoes to explode, and lifting her two feet into the air.
    1981 - Top Hits
“Stars on 45 medley” - Stars on 45
“Sukiyaki” - A Taste of Honey
“A Woman Needs Love (Just like You Do)” - Ray Parker Jr. & Raydio
“But You Know I Love You” - Dolly Parton
    1984 - In a teary home plate ceremony before the Twins-White Sox game at the Metrodome, Calvin Griffith and his sister, Thelma Haynes, signed a letter of intent to sell their 52 percent ownership of the Twins to Minneapolis banker Carl Pohlad for $32 million. Griffith and his sister had been involved with the franchise since 1922, when they were adopted by Clark Griffith, then owner of the Washington Senators. Griffith had moved the Senators, a charter American League franchise, to Minneapolis in 1960
    1985 - "People" magazine took count of the deaths in Sylvester Stallone’s "Rambo" movie, finding that 44 people directly killed. Those at "People" figured out this was an average of one person dying every 2.1 minutes. There were also 70 explosions that killed an uncountable number of people.
    1987 - Thunderstorms in southern Texas produced wind gusts to 116 mph near Quemado. Thunderstorms in New York State produced 5.01 inches of rain in 24 hours at Buffalo, an all-time record for that location, and produced an inch of rain at Bath, PA. The temperature at Fairbanks, AK soared to 92 degrees, establishing a record for the date.
    1988 - Sixty-five cities in twenty-four states reported record high temperatures for the date. Tucson, AZ reported an all-time record high of 114 degrees, surpassing the previous record of 112 degrees established a day earlier. Highs of 98 degrees at Pittsburgh, PA, and 100 degrees at Baltimore, MD, tied records for the month of June.
    1989 - White Sox C Carlton Fisk surpasses Yogi Berra as the American League leader for career home runs by a catcher as his 307th home run helps to beat the Yanks, 7-3.  But Yogi has 10 rings, Fisk has none.  Subsequently, Mike Piazza passed Fisk and holds the MLB record for HRs by a catcher with 427.
    1989 - Top Hits
“I’ll Be Loving You (Forever)” - New Kids on the Block
“Satisfied” - Richard Marx
“Buffalo Stance” - Neneh Cherry
“Love Out Loud” - Earl Thomas Conley
    1990 - The last-place Atlanta Braves fired manager Russ Nixon and replaced him with GM Bobby Cox, who last managed Toronto in 1985. Good move. Cox led the Braves to a dramatic worst-to-first turnaround, the first of its kind in the National League. In the World Series, his team lost to the (also) resurgent Minnesota Twins. Cox was name AP Manager of the Year (the first manager to be so named in both leagues) and repeated in 2004 and 2005. He led the Braves to a division title every season from 1991 to 2005, excluding the strike-shortened 1994 season. Those division titles also let to NL pennants, except for 1993 and 1997, and the Braves won their only World Series under Cox in 1995.  Cox has the fourth highest win total of any manager in MLB history and he was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2014 with contemporaries Joe Torre and Tony LaRussa.
    1993 – White Sox C Carlton Fisk passed Bob Boone catching his 2,226th game to become the all-time leader.
    1993 - New York Met Anthony Young tied the record with his 23rd straight loss.
    1998 - CompUSA announced that it was buying Computer City from Tandy for $275 million. Tandy was selling the sickly chain as part of a turnaround it had started the previous year. Tandy president Leonard Roberts said, “Computer City was a losing operation for the company. The sale will allow us to completely focus on Radio Shack at a time when profits are at an all-time high.”  Radio Shack filed under Chapter XI in 2014 and is being liquidated.
    1990 - Billy Joel became the first rock artist to perform at Yankee Stadium.
    2001 - Returning to the Major Leagues after a stint with Newark Bears of the independent Atlantic League, Jose Canseco starts as the designated hitter for the White Sox. The former All Star, who has 446 career home runs (23rd all time), didn't get any offers after being released by the Angels in the spring.
    2002 – Darryl Kile (1968-2002) died.  A pitcher for the St. Louis Cardinals who won 20 games in 2000, Kile died of undetected coronary disease in Chicago, where he and the Cardinals were staying for a weekend series against the Cubs.
    2003 - In the 13th inning at Veterans' Stadium, pinch-hitter Todd Pratt hits a two-run giving the Phillies a walk-off 6-5 victory over the Red Sox. Boston's shortstop Nomar Garciaparra's club tying record 6-for-6 (all singles) performance could not prevent the bullpen from blowing three late leads; 2-1 in the 8th (Thome's HR ties it), 3-2 in 12th (Thome's second HR ties it).
    2006 - California and the rest of the West Coast got hit by a big heat wave. For three days it has been over 100 degrees in the shade.
It was 104 degrees at Los Gatos, California, where I work. The air conditioning could not keep up and when the office hit 83 degrees at 3pm, we closed up and all went home for a cool one.
    2008 – Comedian George Carlin died.
    2009 – Eastman Kodak announced that it will discontinue sales of the Kodachrome Color Film, concluding its 74-year run as a photography icon.
    2009 - A DC Metro train, traveling southbound at the Fort Totten Station in suburban Maryland, collided into another train sitting in the station. Nine people were killed in the collision (eight passengers and the train operator) and at least 80 others were injured.
    2009 – Donald Fehr announced his retirement as head of the MLB Players Association after 25 years. He was in charge during the 1994 strike that cancelled the World Series, the rampant use of PEDs that he protected under the cover of player privacy, and the relative labor peace that followed. His resignation was effective in March, 2010.

NBA Finals Champions
    1994 - Houston Rockets



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