February 29, 2008
GOOD DAY FOR: Toasting macroeconomics, as the weak U.S. dollar is making California wines cheaper to foreign drinkers, boosting international sales. U.S. wine exports—95 percent of which come from California—rose 9 percent in 2007, to $951 million. Sales to China rose 74 percent. But the U.S. still imported $4.7 billion worth of wine last year. (Los Angeles Times, free registration)
BAD DAY FOR: Independent cinema, as Warner Bros. is swallowing up its autonomous studio unit New Line Cinema. The move is the first major restructuring decision by new Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes. Warner Bros. said the consolidation will cut costs and boost New Line distribution abroad. New Line founder Robert Shaye and co-CEO Michael Lynne are leaving. (AP in BusinessWeek.com)
of The Week magazine.