The dean of Los Angeles business journalism, Mark Lacter, died yesterday following a stroke, his colleagues announced today.

The writer known for explaining complicated economic stories in terms the rest of us could understand was only 59:

The website LA Observed, where Lacter ran the LA Biz Observed blog, reported that his wife, Laura Levine, said he had suffered a stroke yesterday and that he “could not survive the bleeding on his brain.”

He was pronounced dead at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, LA Observed says.

An announcer at KPCC (89.3 FM) radio also reported Lacter's death on-air, lamenting that he had been looking forward to seeing Bette Midler when she came to town. Lacter produced a business segment for the public station.

Lacter once edited the Los Angeles Business Journal.

But perhaps his biggest splash in L.A. journalism came through his explanatory pieces and profiles for Los Angeles Magazine, where he took on the likes of Chinese investors in L.A., Sit 'n Sleep and California Pizza Kitchen.

Read some of his work here.

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