Talking Points


Bostonians get their own domain address


get their own domain address

Bostonians finally have a place on the Internet to call their own. Beginning Thursday, a new Internet domain address ending in .boston began accepting registrations for nonprofit organizations, such as churches and community organizations, for an annual fee of $8.75. Eligible organizations can sign up at, and all addresses are sold on a first-come, first-served basis. Businesses and individuals can preregister on the site now for $19, with general registration for them opening Oct. 10, for a fee set at $15. The domain is one of hundreds of new Internet place names created by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or ICANN, in 2012. Several other US cities have their own domains, including New York, Los Angeles, Miami, and Las Vegas, while other groups and businesses got the rights to domains such as .law and .wedding. The .boston domain was initially awarded to the city of Boston and the Boston Globe in 2012, but the media company sold off nearly all its interest in the venture to Minds + Machines Group Limited, a company specializing in the operation of Internet domains. The Globe retains a small ownership percentage in the new domain and will receive some revenue from the sale of .boston addresses. — HIAWATHA BRAY


Walmart investigating
back-to-school banner over
gun case

Walmart said Thursday it’s investigating a photo that’s attracted interest on social media by purporting to show a sign reading ‘‘Own The School Year Like A Hero’’ atop a gun-filled case in one of the company’s stores. The sign is apparently one that’s used in Walmart’s current superhero-themed ‘‘back to school’’ marketing campaign, but the company said in a statement that ‘‘what’s seen in this photograph would never be acceptable in our stores.’’ Walmart spokesman Charles Crowson said the company hasn’t determined which store might have displayed the sign above guns, or even if the photo is real. The photo showing the ‘‘Own The School Year’’ sign atop a six-sided glass display case filled with rifles has attracted attention on social media, drawing comments of outrage and mentions of school shootings. — ASSOCIATED PRESS


Blue Apron
stock now less than the price of one of its meals

Less than two months after going public, Blue Apron Holdings Inc.’s shares have fallen almost 50 percent to about $5 — less than the price of one of its meals — as the company struggles to persuade investors that it can win the hearts of America’s cooks. In its first earnings report as a public company, Blue Apron managed to beat analysts’ estimates on revenue, but that was the only good news. Having failed to raise as much as expected in its IPO, the company cut deep into the marketing budget. The result: it lost customers during the quarter. — BLOOMBERG NEWS


Rates largely unchanged


Long-term US mortgage rates were unchanged to slightly lower this week, continuing a pattern of little movement in recent weeks. Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the rate on 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages declined to 3.90 percent from 3.93 percent last week. While historically low, that’s still above last year’s average of 3.65 percent. The benchmark rate stood at 3.45 percent a year ago. The rate on 15-year, fixed-rate home loans, popular with homeowners who are refinancing their mortgages, held steady at 3.18 percent. — ASSOCIATED PRESS


Chipotle closes Dallas restaurant after video
of rodents

Get Today's Headlines in your inbox:
The day's top stories delivered every morning.
Thank you for signing up! Sign up for more newsletters here

Chipotle has temporarily closed a Dallas location where a diner posted video of rodents inside the restaurant. A spokeswoman for Chipotle said Wednesday that the restaurant will remain closed while the company thoroughly checks out the 100-year-old building in Dallas’ West End neighborhood. Last month, a diner posted video online that showed three small rodents near a door, including one climbing a wall. Denver-based Chipotle said at the time that a few mice got inside through a small gap in the building, and that the gap was repaired. — ASSOCIATED PRESS


Consumer Reports pulls recommendation on Microsoft laptops

Consumer Reports is pulling its recommendation of four Microsoft laptops after one of its surveys found that users were complaining about problems with the devices. The consumer advocacy group said Thursday that it can no longer recommend Microsoft laptops or tablets because of poor reliability compared to other brands. Microsoft said the findings don’t accurately reflect Surface owners’ ‘‘true experiences.’’ The consumer group says Microsoft machines have performed well in laboratory testing. But a subscriber survey found start-up and freezing problems. — BLOOMBERG NEWS


Wells Fargo chairman likely to step down, report says

Wells Fargo & Co. chairman Stephen Sanger (left) will likely step down before the company’s next shareholder meeting early next year as part of a shake-up of the board of directors, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter. Vice chairman Elizabeth Duke will probably replace Sanger atop the San Francisco-based company’s board, according to the newspaper. Wells Fargo said last week that the board is reviewing its own “structure, composition and practices,” which will lead to actions to be announced later in the third quarter. Calls for changes on the board intensified last month after the bank said 500,000 clients might have unwittingly paid for protection against vehicle loss or damage while making monthly loan payments, even though many drivers already had their own insurance policies. The disclosure follows a scandal last year in which the company acknowledged that it may have opened millions of unauthorized deposit and credit-card accounts. — BLOOMBERG NEWS


Toys ‘R’ Us
to set up shop
in NYC for
the holidays

Toys ‘R’ Us Inc., looking to get its turnaround plan back on track with a big holiday season, will open a temporary shop in New York’s Times Square almost two years after abandoning the tourist district. The 35,000-square-foot store will open this month in the Knickerbocker Building on Broadway near 42nd Street, the toy giant said Thursday. The previous Times Square location closed at the end of 2015. Toys ‘R’ Us looks to bounce back from a disappointing Christmas season in 2016. Same-store sales dropped 2.5 percent during the final nine weeks of last year, hurt by sluggish demand and deep discounts. The new Times Square store will help promote Toys ‘R’ Us’s online-ordering service, which lets customers pick out products on the Internet and then fetch them in person. It also will have a scaled-down animatronic dinosaur, a hat tip to the giant Tyrannosaurus rex that loomed over a floor of the original store. — BLOOMBERG NEWS


Claims for
jobless benefits
up slightly


More Americans applied for jobless aid last week. Despite the small increase, the number of people seeking benefits remained close to historic lows. Weekly unemployment applications rose by 3,000 to a seasonally-adjusted 244,000, the Labor Department said Thursday. The less volatile four-week average declined 1,000 to 241,000. The number of people collecting unemployment benefits has fallen 8.8 percent over the past 12 months to 1.97 million. — ASSOCIATED PRESS


Facebook launches video section

Facebook is launching a new section dedicated to live and recorded video. It’s a potential threat to Twitter, YouTube, Netflix, and other services for watching video. People already watch a lot of videos on Facebook, but mostly when they scroll down their main news feed. Although there has already been a special video section, it mainly showed a random concoction of ‘‘suggested’’ videos. Facebook’s new Watch section builds on this. The idea is to let people find videos and series they like, keep up with them as new episodes air, and interact with other fans in the process. It was available to some US users Thursday, and more people will get it over time. — ASSOCIATED PRESS