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    Harpoon acquires Clown Shoes Beer


    The Boston-based beer brand Harpoon has acquired Ipswich brewer Clown Shoes Beer, leading both companies to publicly laud the merger.

    Under the acquisition, Harpoon will now be brewing and pouring out Clown Shoes’ craft concoctions at Harpoon facilities in Boston and Vermont, according to a company statement.

    “Clown Shoes, Harpoon, and UFO Beer will be the same beer that you have grown to love,” the Harpoon statement said. “In the coming months, you will be able to enjoy all three at both of our breweries.”


    In a tongue-in-cheek statement posted to Clown Shoes’ website, officials at the beer company promised they were not “selling out.”

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    “We will still produce innovative, high quality beers with signature graphic marketing,” company officials wrote. “We will, in fact, create small-batch, state-specific, and barrel aged beers at an accelerated rate in 2018.”

    Under the deal, Clown Shoes workers will also “become employee-owners” at Harpoon, citing the similarities between the two local brands.

    “We root for the same sports teams, shovel snow from the same storms, walk the same beaches during the few decent days of summer, and we drive again and again over the same streets, bridges, and highways,” the statement said. “We are still going to be Clown Shoes and Harpoon is still going to be Harpoon. Now we get to have fun playing in the same sandbox for years to come.”


    Consumer spending at eight-year high, driven by post-hurricane car purchases

    US consumer spending rose in September by the most since August 2009 as motor vehicle purchases surged in the aftermath of two hurricanes, Commerce Department figures showed Monday. Stagnant inflation-adjusted incomes and the smallest saving rate in almost a decade indicate outlays may cool. The jump in September outlays was driven by purchases of durable goods, including the replacement of motor vehicles lost in recent flooding from hurricanes. That means the latest surge probably overstates the strength of consumer spending. The last time spending rose as much was in mid-2009, when auto purchases were fueled by a federal government incentive program called “cash-for-clunkers.”




    Novartis to buy French company for $3.9 billion

    The Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis said Monday that it had offered to buy Advanced Accelerator Applications of France for $3.9 billion in cash, as it seeks to bolster its portfolio of cancer treatments. The acquisition comes amid a slowdown in the value of deals in the pharmaceutical sector this year. The Novartis deal targets a business that develops and produces radiopharmaceutical products used in the treatment of tumors.



    Mattel, hurt by Toys ‘R’ Us bankruptcy, struggles like other toy manufacturers

    Mattel Inc. gained the most in more than a year after its bleak quarterly results renewed speculation that the company may be better off as a takeover target. Gerrick L. Johnson, an analyst at BMO Capital Markets, said on Monday that investors should “start looking at Mattel from a sale of the company perspective.” The report followed a surprisingly sharp sales decline at Mattel last quarter. The toy company, which makes Barbie and Fisher-Price, suspended its dividend and escalated a cost-cutting push to cope with the slump. Mattel also blamed the bankruptcy of Toys “R” Us Inc. for hurting sales, especially in North America.



    Prices at the pump down four cents in Mass.


    Gas prices in Massachusetts are down four cents this week. AAA Northeast said Monday the price of self-serve, regular is averaging $2.45 per gallon. That’s two cents below the national average of $2.47 and 31 cents higher than the average state price a year ago at this time. Gas prices had soared after Hurricane Harvey struck Texas, reaching $2.70 per gallon. But prices have been falling since last month. AAA found a 35-cents range in prices for self-serve, regular, from a low of $2.27 to a high of $2.62 per gallon.



    Hermes expands production of $10,000 Birkin bags

    Hermes International SCA said it will open two new leather-goods production sites over the coming two years in France to meet surging demand for products that include the $10,000 Birkin handbag. One facility will be located near Bordeaux and the other will be in the Paris region, Hermes said Monday. Each will employ about 250 workers. Increasing production is a key aim for Paris-based Hermes as it seeks to reduce waiting lists for its signature handbags. After being largely insulated from a slowdown in luxury consumption in 2015 and 2016, the company is trying to respond to a rebound in demand for high-end goods by training leather workers and adding new sites. The company already expanded its production capabilities earlier this year in France.



    NBC cuts ties with Halperin

    NBC News says it has terminated its contract with Mark Halperin, the political journalist who was accused of sexual harassment by several women when he worked at ABC News more than a decade ago. Since the charges came to light last week, publisher Penguin Press canceled a planned book by Halperin and John Heilemann about the 2016 election and HBO pulled the plug on a miniseries that would have been based on the book. Showtime also said Halperin would not be brought back with co-hosts Heilemann and Mark McKinnon should the political series ‘‘The Circus’’ be renewed. At NBC News, Halperin was a contributor who was most visible as a regular panelist on MSNBC’s ‘‘Morning Joe.’’ The network, which had initially suspended Halperin last week, confirmed the firing on Monday.



    The New Republic publisher on leave amid complaints from female employees

    Hamilton Fish, president and publisher of The New Republic, is taking a leave of absence pending an investigation into complaints by female employees at the magazine, according to a letter sent to its staff Sunday night. In the letter, Win McCormack, the magazine’s owner, said he had asked Fish to “remain on a leave of absence,” effective immediately, pending an independent investigation into recent complaints from women concerning interactions with Fish. The complaints from female employees about Fish also come less than a week after Leon Wieseltier, a prominent longtime editor at The New Republic, issued an apology after a number of women accused him of sexual misconduct. Fish, who has also served as publisher of The Washington Spectator and The Nation, was named publisher of The New Republic in early 2016. In his letter on Sunday, McCormack said that J.J. Gould, the magazine’s editor, would take on the role of acting president and that Art Stupar, the magazine’s associate publisher, would serve as acting publisher.



    China likely to block sale of video game

    The world’s hottest video game is set to be shut out of the biggest market. A Chinese gaming association said in an announcement posted online that PlayerUnknown’s “Battlegrounds” is too bloody and violent for sale in the country. The gladiator-style mentality of the computer game — in which competitors kill each other until only one remains — deviates from the values of socialism and is deemed harmful to young consumers, according to the China Audio-Video and Digital Publishing Association.



    FDA wants to revoke claims about heart benefits of soy milk, tofu

    US regulators want to remove a health claim about the heart benefits of soy from cartons of soy milk, tofu, and other foods, saying the latest scientific evidence no longer shows a clear connection. Monday’s announcement by the Food and Drug Administration marks the first time the agency has moved to revoke a health food claim since it began approving such statements in 1990. The claim that soy protein can reduce heart disease appears on about 200 to 300 products in the United States, according to industry figures, including popular brands like Silk soy milk. Calls to WhiteWave Foods Co., which markets Silk brand soy products, were not immediately returned Monday. The FDA first approved the language about the benefits in 1999 based on studies suggesting soy protein lowered a type of heart-damaging cholesterol in the bloodstream. But some later studies have failed to show a clear link.