Kaiser CEO Halvorson to retire at end of 2013

Oakland-based Kaiser Permanente says its top boss, George Halvorson, will retire in December 2013 as chairman and chief executive of the health services giant.

Halvorson has served in that capacity since 2002. Under his leadership Kaiser has grown to serve more than 9 million members, pioneered electronic health records and is often seen as a model for the future of health care. The CEO made the announcement Thursday to Kaiser workers.

Concord office buildings sell for $84M

DivcoWest said it has bought two office buildings located near Concord BART in a deal that sources estimate to be worth $84 million.

The buildings total 600,000 square feet and sources with direct knowledge of the transaction's details say San Francisco-based DivcoWest paid $140 a square foot, which works out to about $80 million. The two buildings are 100 percent leased to Bank of America, including a banking data center. The purchase was arranged through realty brokerage Jones Lang LaSalle.

Divco wouldn't discuss the terms of its purchase. The transaction was completed Sept. 28, Contra Costa County public records show. The buildings involved in the deal are located at 2000 and 2001 Clayton Road.

Same-store sales jump 5 percent for Ross

Pleasanton-based Ross Stores said same-store sales in September jumped 5 percent compared with the year before, a result that topped Wall Street's expectations.

Analysts had expected same-store sales to rise 4.3 percent.

Ross also offered a more rosy view of its future performance. The retailer of discount apparel said profit should range from 70 to 71 cents for the current quarter. The previous estimates called for a profit range of 63 to 66 cents.

Gap says same-store sales soar 6 percent

San Francisco-based Gap said same-store sales rose 6 percent, better than the predictions of analysts, thanks to strong U.S. sales, although overseas sales slumped, the clothing retailer reported.

Wall Street had expected an increase of 5.3 percent.

Same-store sales in North America rose 5 percent for Gap stores, 4 percent for Banana Republic and 10 percent for Old Navy stores.

Same-store sales for international stores fell 3 percent.

-- Staff