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Winners and Losers

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Each week in Face Time, NJBIZ editors approximate Chris Christie's mood and facial expressions based on the news.

FACE TIME: FLAGGED

The governor's decision to set the flags to half staff following the announcement of James Gandolfini's death draw plenty of ire, as it was just the latest entertainer to get the honor. Hopefully, for his presidential aspirations, Bruce Springsteen has plenty of years left in him.

WINNERS

Retailers
Today marks the first day Amazon.com will charge the sales tax to its New Jersey customers, ending years of campaigning by retailers to level the playing field by forcing the online giant to collect the tax. The jury's still out as to whether this will really get customers back into stores.

Hotels
You're already expecting North Jersey hotels to see a big boost from the Super Bowl, but the numbers are even more robust than you might expect, in some cases more than quadruple the usual rates. And that's just in New Jersey.

Small companies
Fresh off Small Business Week, business owners got a tease of what could be good news to come with the announcement of a federal bill to take pressure off executives to use a home as collateral when seeking a disaster relief loan. Might help drum up interest after the next Sandy.

LOSERS

Revel
The house always wins. You know, unless it doesn't, because as a house, Revel has fewer wins than Wrigley Field. In a bid to win gamblers to its slot machines, it's started compensating gamblers for their slot losses in a bid to drum up business. Las Vegas East, we are not.

Birdsall recipients
Plenty of politicians in North Jersey were telling The Record they wouldn't return the secret donations they received from Birdsall, the engineering firm enmeshed in a pay-to-play scandal. Apparently, in New Jersey, you can clean dirty money by receiving it in good faith.

Jon Corzine
Federal regulators last week filed civil suit against the former 'Wizard of Wall Street' for the disappearing act of $1 billion in MF Global customer money that he failed to prevent. And you thought that Turnpike monetization scheme created some bad publicity.

Write to the Editorial Department at editorial@njbiz.com

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