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Dean’s post at BC Law to be named for benefactor

Marianne Short, executive vice president at UnitedHealth Group, is donating $10 million to Boston College Law School.Boston College


Dean’s post at BC Law to be named for benefactor

The dean’s position at Boston College Law School will be named after health care insurance executive and lawyer Marianne Short, following a $10 million gift to the school from the BC trustee and BC law graduate. Short, currently executive vice president at UnitedHealth Group, is already the law school’s biggest benefactor. She said in a statement that BC Law has been a guiding force throughout her life and 45-year legal career. Short is a 1973 graduate of the Newton College of the Sacred Heart, which merged with BC the year after she graduated, and she received her law degree from the college in 1976. She has had a varied career that also included a partnership at the law firm of Dorsey & Whitney, a stretch as an appellate judge in Minnesota, and work in the attorney general’s office in that state. — JON CHESTO



Digital Guardian acquired by Minn. company

HelpSystems, a Minnesota-based IT company, has acquired Waltham cybersecurity software firm Digital Guardian for an unspecified amount. The 400-person workforce at Digital Guardian, which includes nearly 220 in Massachusetts, will join HelpSystems’ data security team. Digital Guardian CEO Mo Rosen is stepping down and will serve as an adviser through the end of the year to help with the transition, while Digital Guardian chief strategy officer Connie Stack will become managing director for Digital Guardian by HelpSystems. Digital Guardian had previously raised more than $173 million in funding, and its largest investors include Fairhaven Capital Partners, LLR Partners, and State Street Global Advisors. — JON CHESTO


Starbucks raising US workers’ pay as union effort looms

Starbucks said Wednesday it is raising its US employees’ pay and making other changes to improve working conditions in its stores. The Seattle-based coffee giant said all of its US workers will earn at least $15 — and up to $23 — per hour by next summer. In late January, employees with two or more years of service will get a 5 percent raise, while those with five or more years of service could receive up to a 10 percent raise. Workers can also get a $200 recruitment bonus to help attract new employees. In a letter to employees, Starbucks’ North America President Rossann Williams said the pay raises not only support workers but will enhance recruitment efforts in a challenging labor market. Starbucks said it’s the third time in 24 months that it has raised workers’ pay. The action comes amid some worker unrest for the company. Employees at three Starbucks stores in Buffalo, N.Y., are trying to form a union to give them greater leverage on issues like understaffing of stores and worker training. The group, Starbucks Workers United, has filed petitions with the National Labor Relations Board seeking union votes. Starbucks, which has no unions at its 8,000 company-owned stores in the United States, opposes that effort. — ASSOCIATED PRESS



Walmart removes household spray from shelves after two deaths

Walmart told customers to immediately stop using a household spray, double-bag it, put it in a cardboard box and return it because the product might contain a ‘’rare and dangerous bacteria.’’ The aromatherapy spray, a Better Homes and Gardens-branded product labeled ‘’Lavender & Chamomile with Gemstones,’’ was linked to a cluster of cases in the United States this year of melioidosis, a dangerous bacterial infection normally found in tropical climates. Walmart licenses the Better Homes and Gardens name for the product, which is manufactured in India, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed Tuesday that its lab tests had genetically matched the bacterial strains of patients in Kansas, Minnesota, and Texas to a spray bottle in the home of a Georgia patient who was one of two people to have died in the cluster. One of those who died was a child. Walmart said Tuesday it immediately pulled the product from about 55 stores in 18 states and stopped online sales. — BLOOMBERG NEWS



Coke is bubbling again

Coca-Cola Co. is getting its fizz back. Revenue jumped 16 percent to $10 billion in the third quarter as stadiums, movie theaters, and other venues reopened around the world. Venues like restaurants and theaters typically account for half the company’s sales, and there was a pronounced recovery in the July-September period. The company’s Costa coffee shops reopened in the United Kingdom, for example, helping Coke’s coffee sales rise 19 percent compared to the year-ago period. But sales of products consumed at home are still going strong. Sales of nutrition drinks, juices, and dairy — including Fairlife milk and Minute Maid orange juice — jumped 12 percent. Sales of sparkling soft drinks were up 6 percent. — BLOOMBERG NEWS


Boeing loses more than $100m due to production problems

Boeing lost $109 million in the third quarter as it struggled with production problems that have blocked deliveries of the 787, a large plane popular on international airline routes. Meanwhile, Boeing is working with China’s regulators to clear the 737 Max to resume commercial flights in China by year-end and signaled that deliveries of the jet could resume soon to the plane’s largest overseas market. China is the biggest country that is still grounding Boeing’s cash cow, about a year after US regulators approved flight-computer fixes following two fatal crashes. — BLOOMBERG NEWS



The circus may come back to town — sans animals

Four years after the “Greatest Show On Earth” shut down, officials are planning to bring back the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus — without animal acts. An announcement is expected sometime next year, according to Nicole Zimmerman, a spokesperson for Feld Entertainment Inc. of Ellenton, Fla. The three-ring circus shut down in May 2017 after a 146-year run. Costly court battles with animal rights activists led circus officials to end elephant acts in 2016. Without the elephants, ticket sales declined. Officials also blamed increased railroad costs, and the rise of online games and videos, which made the “Greatest Show On Earth’' not seem that great anymore. — ASSOCIATED PRESS


Higher prices don’t stop McDonald’s fans

Higher menu prices aren’t yet denting demand for McDonald’s, which reported stronger-than-expected sales in the third quarter. Revenue jumped 14 percent to $6.2 billion in the July-September period, the Chicago burger giant said Wednesday. That beat Wall Street’s forecast of $6 billion, according to analysts polled by FactSet. The company said US prices were up 6 percent over the prior year in the July-September period to cover rising wages and higher costs for commodities like food and paper. — ASSOCIATED PRESS


Holiday sales are predicted to jump as much as 10.5 percent this year

US holiday sales this year will surge 8.5 percent to 10.5 percent from 2020 to reach as much as $859 billion, according to the National Retail Federation. The forecast from the industry group cites rising incomes and low debt among consumers, as well as retailers’ investments to make sure they’re stocked up in the last quarter of the year. This year’s spending is expected to reach a record high, according to NRF chief executive Matthew Shay. Consumer demand has remained robust in the United States in spite of a steady rhythm of price hikes as companies deal with a shortage of workers and a surge in challenges related to freight and raw materials. — BLOOMBERG NEWS



Hinge adds an audio feature

The dating app Hinge rolled out an audio feature Wednesday that allows users to fill in their profiles with voice recordings, part of an effort to make the app more interactive. With the new feature, users of the Match Group Inc.-owned app can now record 30-second responses to prompts when filling out personal details, allowing potential romantic partners to hear a voice in addition to scanning photos attached to a profile. The feature was introduced as Tinder, another Match-owned app, is rolling out virtual currency in Australia in a bid to boost user engagement. — BLOOMBERG NEWS