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TALKING POINTS

Postal Service: Red ink for 11th year in row as mail slumps

David Goldman/Associated Press/File 2013

The US Postal Service is reporting an operating loss for the 11th straight year.

GOVERNMENT

Postal Service posts another loss

The beleaguered US Postal Service reported a financial loss Tuesday for the 11th straight year, citing declining mail volume and costs of its pension and health care obligations even as it predicted another strong holiday season of package deliveries. It pleaded for more freedom to raise stamp prices to help keep pace with consumer demand for ever-quicker deliveries from online shopping. The Postal Service reported a loss of $2.7 billion for the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30. That was better than a $5.6 billion loss in the prior year but was mainly due to fluctuations in interest rates that reduced workers’ compensation expenses. The 2017 loss came after a double-digit increase in package delivery was unable to offset drop-offs in letter mail, which makes up more than 70 percent of total postal revenue. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

BIOTECH

ImmusanT gets another $40 million in venture capital

Cambridge-based ImmusanT said Tuesday it has raised another $40 million in venture capital to bankroll the biotech startup’s efforts to treat and diagnose celiac disease, a genetic autoimmune disorder that makes 3 million Americans intolerant of gluten in their diet. The money, which comes on top of $32 million in venture capital raised by ImmusanT since 2011, will help finance a phase two study next year of an experimental therapeutic vaccine. Patients would give themselves the vaccine periodically to boost their tolerance to gluten in wheat, barley, and rye. Although gluten-free diets have become popular with many Americans, people with celiac disease can suffer serious long-term health problems from accidental exposure to gluten, including damage to the digestive tract, anemia, osteoporosis, infertility, even cancer. Currently, there is no treatment. ImmusanT has tested Nexvax2, an experimental vaccine, on about 150 celiac patients in four early studies in the hopes of boosting tolerance to gluten proteins, said Leslie Williams, president and chief executive of ImmusanT. If the therapy works, celiac patients would still need to maintain gluten-free diets, but they would be protected if they accidentally eat them. ImmusanT is also trying to develop better ways to identify people with celiac disease. Although many people have a genetic predisposition to the disorder, most don’t develop it, leading some researchers to theorize that something triggers the disease, possibly a virus. The third round of financing was led by ARCH Venture Partners, which joins Vatera Healthcare Partners, as investors in the company. — JONATHAN SALTZMAN

RETAIL

TJX revenue at established stores flat

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Even the parent company of T.J. Maxx and Marshalls is feeling some retail pain. Framingham-based TJX Cos., which also operates HomeGoods stores, said Tuesday that revenue at established stores was flat in the third quarter compared to a year ago — the first time it didn’t post an increase since 2009. Analysts were expecting a gain, and the company’s shares fell 4 percent. Chief executive and president Ernie L. Herrman blamed the sluggish performance on the severe hurricanes that struck Florida and Texas, as well as some fashion misses. The company, known for its discounts on name-brand merchandise, has been a bright spot in retail since the Great Recession and has attracted shoppers away from mall-based stores as it expands and offers more up-to-date products. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

REGULATION

Trump administration wants to delay pesticide decision

The Trump administration is seeking a two-year delay of an upcoming deadline to determine whether a family of widely used pesticides is harmful to endangered species. The request filed with a federal judge comes after Dow Chemical and two other pesticide makers asked the government to set aside research by federal scientists that shows chlorpyrifos, diazinon, and malathion are harmful to about 1,800 critically threatened or endangered species. Midland, Mich.-based Dow Chemical contends the studies are flawed. It is the latest example of the Trump administration seeking to block or delay environmental rules at the industry’s behest. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

HOME IMPROVEMENT

Home Depot sales soar in wake of hurricanes

Sales at Home Depot surged during the third quarter, a period marked by massive rebuilding efforts after severe hurricanes struck Florida and Texas, wildfires consumed entire neighborhoods in the West, and earthquakes rattled Mexico. The Atlanta-based home improvement retailer is one of the inadvertent beneficiaries after catastrophes, including Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, shaved as much as at least one-half of 1 percentage point off annual growth for the United States in the same quarter. Major department stores like Macy’s and J.C. Penney that reported third-quarter results last week said that the storms had hurt their sales. Home Depot Inc., which is furnishing a lot of material for the recovery, raised its outlook for the year Tuesday. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

INTERNET TV

New service has no sports, major networks

The hook of the latest Internet TV service is a low price and no sports channels. Analysts estimate that Internet TV packages such as Sling TV, YouTube TV, and DirecTV Now have so far signed up a few million customers. These services are meant to replace cable TV with a cheaper price and a smaller bundle of channels. Unlike the existing services, though, Philo doesn’t offer many of the networks that are often considered must-have. It lacks sports and the dominant cable news networks and excludes broadcast networks like NBC, ABC, CBS, and Fox. Instead, it focuses on music and comedy, scripted series, and reality shows, with networks like AMC, Food Network, HGTV, MT, and Comedy Central. The lack of expensive sports channels and other popular networks helps lower Philo’s cost to just $16 a month for 37 channels. That’s cheaper than the other Internet-TV services. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

CLIMATE CHANGE

Microsoft pledges to curb emissions

Microsoft Corp. joined a growing number of companies pledging to curb their emissions in line with the international efforts to keep global warming to no more than 2 degrees Celsius. The world’s biggest software company by revenue set a new target to cut carbon dioxide by 75 percent between 2013 and 2030, which is scientifically aligned with the landmark Paris Agreement, according to a blog posting Tuesday by Microsoft president Brad Smith. The announcement was made during the United Nations annual climate conference, where a group of businesses and US state leaders have voiced support for the Paris deal despite President Trump’s plan to withdraw. Microsoft’s new target builds on previous goals to increase its use of renewable energy and set an internal carbon price. — BLOOMBERG NEWS

HOME SHARING

Airbnb limits number of nights owners can rent out homes in Paris

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Airbnb says hosts in central Paris can now only rent out their homes for up to 120 nights a year, a new cap introduced to comply with city regulations. The company’s director for France and Belgium, Emmanuel Marill, said Tuesday the cap would apply to four central districts, or arrondissements, of Paris. Hosts will have a ‘‘ticker’’ on their home page showing how many nights they have remaining available. City Council member Sylvain Maillard tweeted praise for the decision, though critics said it should be extended to all 20 Paris arrondissements. Residents and regulators in tourist destinations worldwide have protested services like Airbnb, saying they drive up housing costs and that hosts use them to run commercial businesses. Other cities have instituted caps or require permits. — ASSOCIATED PRESS