Dior, Longchamp and a glitzy new hotel

Welcome to CapBiz A.M., your morning primer on business news with a focus on Washington.

CityCenter taking shape: Hines, the lead developer of the CityCenter complex in downtown D.C., may soon unveil a retail line-up that sources say will likely include Dior, Longchamp and Paul Stuart. Meanwhile, a luxury hotel could be on its way next, with a construction slated to start next year. (CAPBIZ)

A pay package approved: MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor’s compensation package (which totaled $6.8 million last year) has been approved again for the coming year – but some shareholders question whether Saylor needs to spend more time focused on the company. (CAPBIZ)

Cost cutting boosts defense giants: Defense contractors General Dynamics and Northrop Grumman both saw their revenues decline during the first three months of the year, but both managed to lift profits by trimming costs. And for one of them, a $51 million tax benefit certainly helped, too. (CAPBIZ)

Spring buying season off to slow start: One day after we reported that sales of existing homes have slowed to their slowest pace since the summer 2012, we learned that sales of new homes aren’t faring much better, slipping in March to their lowest totals since summer 2013. (AP)

A healthy decision: More companies large and small are starting or expanding wellness programs that aim to reduce their medical costs by improving their employees’ health – a trend driven in part by new rules in the federal health care law. (WP)

Amazon scores win over Netflix: Non-HBO subscribers will soon be able to stream many of the network’s old shows through Amazon Prime, the companies announced on Wednesday. With the move, Netflix may have to rethink dismissing Amazon as a chief rival. (CNN)

Facebook executive departs: Facebook CFO David Ebersman, who took the company public and helped facilitate the acquisition of WhatsApp, has announced plans to leave the social networking giant later this fall. He will be replaced by the former CFO at Zynga. (REC)

Open chips: IBM on Wednesday unveiled the first computers using its latest microprocessor chips – technology that the company hopes will turn around its ailing hardware businesses, which reported a loss of $660 million during the first three months of the year. (WSJ)

Small businesses growing stronger: New research shows that, while small companies may not be growing larger in terms of sales or headcount, they have emerged from the recession with healthier financials than they had before the economy imploded. Just look at their profit margins. (OSB)

On Wall Street

Wednesday put an end to the market’s week-long climb, as investors pulled back after some weak housing data and several poor earnings reports. Coca-Cola, General Motors and Time Warner are due for earnings on Thursday. (Get the latest updates here)

What’s on tap today

Durable goods orders (8:30 a.m.)

Unemployment claims (8:30 a.m.)

National Advertisers’ Law & Public Policy Conference (7:30 a.m.)

ACT-IAC Small Business Contracting Conference (7:45 a.m.)

Successful exits to shoot for (panel event), Northern Virginia Technology Council (4:30 p.m.)

Help: How to find and compete for the most talented job candidates (OSB)

Follow: Michael Saylor, MicroStrategy CEO

Extra: American corporations still don’t have many women at the top. Like, at all. (WP)

J.D. Harrison covers startups, small business and entrepreneurship, with a focus on public policy, and he manages the Post's On Small Business blog. Before arriving in 2011, J.D. covered innovation and technology for Portfolio in New York City. He has a master’s in journalism from Columbia University and a bachelor’s degree from Wake Forest University (Go Deacs).
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J.D. Harrison | April 23