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TALKING POINTS

Mayflower Wind wins second round of offshore bidding

Three  Deepwater Wind turbines, operated by Danish ffshore wind company Orsted. in the water off Block Island, R.I.
Three Deepwater Wind turbines, operated by Danish ffshore wind company Orsted. in the water off Block Island, R.I. Michael Dwyer/Associated Press/File 2016/Associated Press

ENERGY

Mayflower Wind wins second round of offshore bidding

Mayflower Wind has won the second round of the Massachusetts offshore wind sweepstakes. The wind-farm developer, a joint venture owned by Shell and EDP Renewables, was selected by the state’s three big electric utilities to provide about 800 megawatts of electricity from a wind farm that would be built in waters south of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket. That would be enough power for about 470,000 homes. Officials in the Baker administration helped oversee the bidding, but declined to say whether the winning bid from Mayflower offered the lowest price in this round of all bids. (Mayflower’s price will be public record eventually.) Judith Judson, the state’s commissioner of energy resources, said there will be economic benefits, as well, particularly for the South Coast, although Mayflower had submitted two higher-priced bids that would have potentially resulted in even more local work related to the project. “We were extremely pleased with the pricing we saw, as well as the other benefits that Mayflower brought into the solicitation,” Judson said. Mayflower Wind beat two other bidders, the Vineyard Wind and Bay State Wind joint ventures. Vineyard Wind won the first round of contracts, also to provide 800 megawatts, but its project remains bogged down in the federal permitting process. The state Legislature set this auction process up through a 2016 law aimed at spurring more clean sources of energy, including offshore wind. — JON CHESTO

ECONOMY

Businesses added only 125,000 jobs this month

US businesses added a mere 125,000 jobs in October, a slowdown in hiring driven in part by job cuts in manufacturing and construction. Payroll processor ADP said that hiring in September was also revised down sharply, to 93,000 jobs from the initial report of 135,000 jobs. The October figure did not account for the strike by General Motors’ workers, which probably led to the loss of an additional 60,000 jobs, said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics. — BLOOMBERG NEWS

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RIDE HAILING

executives say Lyft will stop losing money by end of 2021

Lyft is continuing to lose staggering sums of money as it barrels ahead with impressive revenue growth, but its executives said they believe the company will turn a corner and reach profitability in about two years. The ride-hailing heavyweight raised $955.6 million in revenue in the third quarter, up 63 percent from the same time last year, the company said Wednesday. That beat expectations of analysts polled by FactSet. But the company lost $463.5 million in the quarter, compared with a $249.2 million loss a year earlier. More than half of the loss came from stock-based compensation and payroll tax expenses related to its initial public offering. On the bright side, Lyft’s executives emphasized they believe the company will turn a profit in the fourth quarter of 2021, a year earlier than they had previously projected. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

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INVESTMENTS

Fidelity cuts the value of its stake in Juul

Fidelity Investments slashed the estimated value of its stake in Juul Labs Inc. amid a government crackdown on the e-cigarette company. The Fidelity Blue Chip Growth Fund disclosed online that the value of its Juul shares plunged about 48 percent during September. The fund held almost two-thirds of the 4.1 million Juul shares that Fidelity funds reported owning on a combined basis at the end of July. Fidelity is one of the largest money managers to benefit from early bets on closely held startups such as Juul, We Co., and Uber Technologies Inc. that blossomed into unicorns — the term for private companies that are valued at $1 billion or more. The firms have seen their once-lofty valuations tumble this year, forcing Fidelity funds to write down stakes that had previously enjoyed huge gains. — BLOOMBERG NEWS

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ENTERTAINMENT

Sony profit falls on weak movie, game console business

Sony Corp. said Wednesday that its net profit fell 15 percent in the first half of the year, though strong sales of entertainment and imaging sensors offset weakness in the games sector. Tokyo-based Sony, which makes Bravia digital TVs and the Aibo robotic dog, upgraded its earnings forecast for the full fiscal year on expectations for stronger sales and lower taxes. Sony’s movie division, Sony Pictures Entertainment, is expected to underperform earlier forecasts due to delays in releases, it said. The video game business also is expected to fall below earlier expectations due to lower than forecast sales of the PlayStation 4 game console and adverse foreign exchange trends, it said. Sony’s music unit saw stronger sales from downloads and streaming. The company is preparing releases in coming months of works by Celine Dion, Pentatonix, Leonard Cohen, and Luke Combs, among others. Gains from Spotify have helped lift Sony’s bottom line. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

AGRICULTURE

Farm bankruptcies at a high

US farm bankruptcies in September surged 24 percent to the highest since 2011 amid strains from President Trump’s trade war with China and a year of wild weather. Growers are also becoming increasingly dependent on trade aid and other federal programs for income, figures showed in a report by the American Farm Bureau Federation, the nation’s largest general farm organization. The squeeze on farmers underscores the toll China’s retaliatory tariffs have taken on a critical Trump constituency as the president enters a reelection campaign and a fight to stave off impeachment. — BLOOMBERG NEWS

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SOCIAL MEDIA

Facebook to pay UK fine after scandal

Facebook has agreed to pay a 500,000-pound ($643,000) fine in a privacy case stemming from the Cambridge Analytica scandal, agreeing to accept the fine without admitting any liability. Britain’s Information Commissioner Office had leveled the fine after concluding Facebook processed the personal information of users unfairly by exposing it for use by app developers without informed consent. Facebook was at pains to underline that the ICO had not found the data had actually been transferred to Cambridge Analytica, which counted President Trump’s 2016 election campaign among its clients. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

AUTOMOTIVE

Fiat Chrysler in merger talks with Peugeot

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles said it is in talks with French rival PSA Peugeot in its second bid this year to reshape the global auto industry at a time of heightened uncertainty for the sector. A merger would create the fourth-largest automaker, with the potential for big savings in Europe just as the industry struggles with slowing sales and the need to invest heavily in new technologies like electric cars. But a deal does not help either to expand in China, the world’s largest market, where both are weak, analysts said. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

AUTOMOTIVE

Ford will update software online or via cellphones

Beginning next year, Ford’s redesigned vehicle models will allow software updates over the Internet or through cellular phone connections. The company says every model will be equipped with the technology as they are redesigned. The shift will reduce visits to dealers for service and even some computer-related recall repairs. Once completed, Ford will join the electric car maker Tesla Inc. in having over-the-air software updates across its model lineup. Owners will be able to opt in to the program and get updates over their home wireless network at no cost. The cost for cellular updates has not been announced.
— ASSOCIATED PRESS

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