State’s bankers are trying to weed out the risk

Legal uncertainty may force banks to pass on financing marijuana industry in Massachusetts.

Mass Mutual Building in downtown Springfield

For MassMutual, a big tax break for a short move

The company is moving from Enfield, Conn., to Springfield, Mass., and is being rewarded with a $46 million deal by Charlie Baker’s administration.

Martin Shkreli

US asks judge to approve seizure of Martin Shkreli’s assets

The defense has argued that Shkreli owes nothing, because the hedge fund investors actually ended up making a profit off drug company stock he gave them.

NATIONAL HARBOR, MD - FEBRUARY 22: The booth of National Rifle Association (NRA) is seen during CPAC 2018 February 22, 2018 in National Harbor, Maryland. The American Conservative Union hosted its annual Conservative Political Action Conference to discuss conservative agenda. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

A chink in the NRA armor? Boycott against gun lobby’s business partners claims wins

MetLife, Enterprise car rentals, airlines, and Boston home security startup SimpliSafe dropped NRA deals after the Parkland shooting.

Latest Business headlines

For Warren Buffett, acquisitions have gotten too pricey

Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett says an acquisition craze has driven up prices.


Even small gestures can help develop better employee relationships

Making sure to take a moment to talk about something other than work can serve to make you a more effective manager.

Five things you should know about Elizabeth Skidmore

Five things you should know about Elizabeth Skidmore


Same old tax scam, but with a new troubling twist

Fake refunds are deposited into taxpayers’ real bank accounts. Then crooks, posings as the IRS, demand that you return the money to them.

The week ahead in business

This week’s events include: learning how storytelling can help with personal branding, and how to better use networking as a business strategy.


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Special section | Game Changers

// 51 bright ideas and breakthroughs for 2017

In a revolutionary place like Boston, innovators and innovations are as common as bad drivers. See who made our annual list.


// Opinion: Psychiatric advance directives can help us help our patients

After struggling to treat a patient who was mentally ill, a Cambridge Health Alliance doctor has come around to them.

More Business headlines

Citigroup is preparing to issue $330 million in refunds.

Citi to refund $335 million after finding card APRs too high

The lender determined that a method it was using to calculate APRs didn’t properly reflect the full benefit customers should have received for good behavior, such as paying on time.

General Mills, sold on selling pet food again, to buy Blue Buffalo for $8b

It’s a return to the pet business for the more than 150-year-old company, which used to sell food for cats, dogs, and birds back in the 1950s.

In a statement Friday, Steward officials said the company is adding office space to keep up with its growth.

Steward Health Care to move top executives to Dallas

The relocation comes after the hospital chain expanded significantly outside of Massachusetts.

Kylie Jenner.

Snap royalty Kylie Jenner helped erase $1.3b in market value with just a tweet

Snap Inc.’s flagship platform has lost some luster, at least according to one social-media influencer in the Kardashian-Jenner clan.

General Mills is buying Blue Buffalo Pet Products Inc. in a deal valued at about $8 billion.

General Mills buying Blue Buffalo Pet Products in $8 billion deal

General Mills Inc. will pay $40 per Blue Buffalo share. That’s a 17 percent premium to the pet food company’s Thursday closing price.

“With a lot of chairs and desks, you can change position, but you do it only when you feel pain,” says Simon Hong, creator of the StandX.


This chair will tell you when to move

Simon Hong’s robotic StandX is designed to prevent back pain instead of relieving it.

Wayfair CEO Niraj said an emphasis on technology has allowed the company to redefine “what is possible in the home category.”

Wayfair fails to deliver progress on profit, sending stock tumbling

The Boston-based furniture retailer on Thursday posted a wider-than-expected quarterly loss, and its stock fell the most since the company went public in 2014.

Weekend business agenda

A businesswomen’s conference, a beginner’s guide to real estate, and other events and things to know.

Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May is facing a divided Cabinet on her plans for a post-Brexit deal with the EU.

EU says May’s Brexit plan won’t work

The European Commission rejected UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s emerging plan for a post-Brexit trade deal, just as she tries to persuade her divided Cabinet to back it.

6-2-2014 Jamaica Plain, Mass. Samuel Adams Brewery founder Jim Koch spends lot of his time walking through his brewery. Globe photo by Bill Brett

Boston Beer shares plunge 14 percent

Shares in Boston Beer Co. plunged nearly 14 percent on Thursday after the brewer reported fourth-quarter earnings and provided guidance for 2018.

Airbnb co-founder and CEO Brian Chesky talked about the company’s new

Airbnb unveils ‘Plus’ program

Airbnb will have inspectors rate thousands of listed properties in an effort to reassure travelers they’re booking nice places.

More volatility is predicted for the already notoriously wild Chinese stock market.

Chinese shares are on shaky ground as investors favor just a few

China’s stock market wasn’t in great shape even before the past month’s slide.

A package from Amazon on a UPS truck in New York.

The Fine Print | Sean P. Murphy

Amazon customers frustrated by company’s response

Two recent Globe stories about Amazon customers receiving packages they never ordered generated tremendous response from readers who have experienced the same thing.

Niman Kenkre, under the name


His online gambling days are over, but Niman Kenkre is still all in on poker

This Belmont super-player once faced off against Ben Affleck, Kevin Hart, Michael Phelps, and Tobey Maguire.

VC firms offering advice, not just money, to help women founders

Firms, many with women leadership, are finding ways to help guide companies they might buy into later.

Governor Charlie Baker appointed Katherine Lev to the Commonwealth Employment Relations Board in 2015.

Citing bias, unions call for state labor board member to step down or quit outside job

Local union leaders are raising concerns, but the state says the attorney’s work with organizations that oppose unionization doesn’t create a conflict of interest.

The rates approved Thursday by the Massachusetts Group Insurance Commission (shown at Feb. 1 meeting) apply to hundreds of thousands of state and local employees, retirees, and their families.

After health-insurance controversy, most public workers to avoid large premium increases

The rates were approved Thursday by the Massachusetts Group Insurance Commission.

Steve Hoffman, seen last fall, said discussions with state financial institutions left him feeling pessimistic.

Top cannabis regulator: Massachusetts should consider government-run bank for pot companies

With the private sector reluctant, would a state bank make it easier to collect cannabis taxes and prevent theft?

Carlos Wan-zeler fled to Brazil in 2014.

TelexFree Ponzi scheme fugitive stripped of Brazilian citizenship; may open door to extradition

By stripping Carlos Wanzeler of his citizenship, Brazilian authorities may be taking a step toward his extradition.

Joseph Woodin, former chief executive of Martha’s Vineyard Hospital.

Ousted Vineyard hospital chief lands job in Alaska, but legal fight with Partners isn’t over

Health-care executive Joseph Woodin is trading one scenic vista for another.

About 2 million square feet of development potential is available at state-owned parcels near the Veolia power plant on Kneeland Street.

Developers cool to downtown Boston sites the state sees as hot properties

With no offers despite years of trying, state officials have no plans to market a big site near a train and bus station.

Conservative Twitter users are accusing the social media platform of deleting their followers. Twitter says it is merely in the process of verifying that its users are real humans, and not bots.

As Twitter moves to purge fake accounts, conservatives say they are being targeted

Some conservative Twitter Inc. users are accusing the company of unfairly targeting their followers as it steps up efforts to get rid of fake or abusive accounts.

Spike in bond yields upends US stock market rally

US stocks closed broadly lower Wednesday as investors reacted to a surge in bond yields.

Key regulators, including Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell, have long opposed getting rid of the wind-down authority.

Treasury won’t ditch post-crisis plan for big bank failures

US bank watchdogs should retain the ability to dismantle massive financial firms after a collapse, but should ensure the power is reserved  “as an emergency tool,” the Treasury said Wednesday.

Business agenda

Mortgage rates, earnings release dates, and other events and things to know.

The Boston Dynamics robot-dog is back and wants you to get out of its way

In the video, a yellow, four-legged machine dubbed “SpotMini” fights off human attempts to stop it from opening a door.

Amid growing evidence of dire amounts of waste in the world’s oceans, conservation is becoming a selling point for firms trying to jump on the bandwagon of concern about the flood of plastic choking sea life.

Amid a flood of plastic, big companies try to clean up image

Conservation is becoming a selling point for firms trying to jump on the bandwagon of concern about the flood of plastic choking sea life.

Hyperloop in Massachusetts? Not so fast

A state senator says he’s had informal discussions with Elon Musk’s Boring Company.

Diana Yousef is a finalist in the 2018 North American Cartier Women's Initiative Awards. Yousef invented a portable evaporative toilet that requires no electricity and plumbing.

Three Boston area entrepreneurs finalists in Cartier global businesswomen’s competition

The French watchmaker sponsors a global competition for women-run startups.

FILE - This Feb. 20, 2015 file photo, photo shows an arrangement of peanuts in New York. The first treatment to help prevent serious allergic reactions to peanuts may be on the way. A company said Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018 that its daily capsules of peanut flour helped sensitize children to nuts in a major study. (AP Photo/Patrick Sison, File)


Peanut allergy therapy scores late-stage trial win

An experimental treatment aimed at helping people with severe peanut allergy scored a clinical win Tuesday.

A settlement may be near in the state of Minnesota’s lawsuit against manufacturer 3M Co., which alleges the company’s chemicals caused environmental damage.

3M’s Minnesota Scotchgard trial halted after fresh cancer claims

3M Co. is expected to settle a lawsuit with Minnesota that sought $5 billion over pollution from former Scotchgard ingredients after a trial was abruptly halted.

Many airline pilots’ pensions were terminated or frozen during airline bankruptcies in the last two decades.

Airlines ‘flush with money’ spur pilots’ quest for lost pensions

Airline pilots, still resentful over pensions yanked away in a wave of industry bankruptcies, see growing company profits as a chance to reclaim some of those lost benefits.

Ministry of Supply’s jacket can be warmed using the app on your phone.

This intelligent jacket turns up the heat with the sound of your voice

MIT-founded apparel brand Ministry of Supply uses NASA technology in its fabrics and is launching a heated jacket that can be controlled by your voice. 

Walmart stock took a beating Tuesday, falling 10.2 percent for its biggest single-day percentage drop in 30 years.

Walmart's bruising battle with Amazon cuts its profit even as revenue rises

Walmart reported mixed fourth-quarter results Tuesday amid efforts to bolster its online business.

Albertsons will buy Rite Aid, part of a strategy to counter Amazon

Grocer Albertsons Cos. will buy drugstore chain Rite Aid Corp. in a deal that would accelerate the remaking of the U.S. retail and health-care industries.

Stocks sink as Walmart plunges 10 percent, snapping market’s six-day winning streak

US indexes declined Tuesday, snapping a six-day winning streak.

FILE- In this Sept. 24, 2013, file photo, just cut stacks of $100 bills make their way down the line at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing Western Currency Facility in Fort Worth, Texas. Tentative signs have emerged that prices could accelerate in coming months. Most economists expect inflation to edge up and end the year a few tenths of a percentage point above the Federal Reserve's target. But most foresee only minimal effect on the economy. (AP Photo/LM Otero, File)

Evan Horowitz | Quick Study

Why a little inflation isn’t a bad thing

Inflation can stimulate spending and make it easier for the Fed to tackle a recession.

“A lot of customers ask if I take credit cards,” Johnny’s Barber Shop owner Joao Goncalves said. “I say I don’t take them. Sometimes they say, ‘I’ll go to the bank,’ but they don’t come back.”

Facing the digital divide at Boston’s cash-only shops

Many businesses in Boston’s Bowdoin-Geneva neighborhood are cash-only operations in a digital world, and increasingly, that is a disadvantage.

Zorica Pantic, an engineer by training, has led the Fenway university’s expansion and is credited with helping expand the commuter school.

First female president of Wentworth Institute stepping down

Zorica Pantic announces she will retire from the Fenway university in 2019 after 14 years on the job.

The Wharton Alumni Angel Network of Boston is hosting a panel discussion Wednesday night on how to navigate the biotech industry and avoid startup failure.

Wednesday’s business agenda

Avoid startup failure, LinkedIn help, and other events and things to know.

A customer hold a piece of Kentucky Fried Chicken outside a KFC restaurant, Tuesday, July 13, 2010, in Mountain View, Calif. Yum Brands Inc., which owns Taco Bell, Pizza Hut and KFC, reports second-quarter results after the close of regular trading. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)

Hundreds of UK Kentucky Fried Chickens run out of, well, chicken

About 470 of the fried chicken chain’s 900 UK restaurants remained closed Tuesday because of a chicken shortage, according to KFC officials.

Tech Lab by Hiawatha Bray


Bray writes about technology for the Business section. His Tech Lab column appears on Thursdays.

Shirley Leung


Leung writes a business column every Wednesday and Friday. Previously she served six years as the business editor overseeing daily and Sunday coverage.