Goodwin adds another office in U.K.
Goodwin’s global empire just got a little bigger. The Boston law firm has opened an office in Cambridge, U.K., that will focus on life sciences and technology. The office will be led by partner David Mardle, who will split his time between Goodwin’s London and Cambridge offices, and will soon be staffed by 10 lawyers. It’s the 13th office for Goodwin, which also recently opened offices in Santa Monica, Calif., (focused on technology and private equity) and in Luxembourg (focused on private investment funds). Goodwin has grown its European presence from 20 lawyers to nearly 200 during the past five years. — JON CHESTO
French oil company to pay $110 million toward reconstruction of Notre Dame
Oil company Total says it has signed an agreement to pay $110 million toward the reconstruction of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris that it pledged shortly after April’s devastating fire. Total chief executive Patrick Pouyanne signed an accord Thursday with the Heritage Foundation, an organization handling reconstruction payments. The money will be paid in installments from 2020 until the end of the work, which President Emmanuel Macron has said will take five years. Last month, French billionaire Francois Pinault and his son finalized their $110 million donation, a week after rival tycoon Bernard Arnault of luxury giant LVMH finalized his company’s donation of $220 million. The agreements follow months of delay that left officials reliant on small charity donations to fund the repairs’ first phase. — ASSOCIATED PRESS
Gap CEO leaving amid declining sales
Gap’s board announced that chief executive Art Peck is stepping down as the company continues to struggle to turn around a long-standing sales slump. The San Francisco-based retailer also said late Thursday that it cut its earnings outlook for the year as sales at the Gap, Banana Republic, and Old Navy fell in the most recent quarter. Peck, who joined the company in 2005 and became CEO in 2015, will depart from the company after a brief transition. — ASSOCIATED PRESS
Former AIG trader gets bonus dating back to meltdown
A former American International Group Inc. senior trader won his bid for $9.2 million in bonuses in a dispute at France’s highest court that dates back to the financial crisis a decade ago. The Cour de Cassation in Paris rejected AIG’s arguments that its massive losses in 2008 meant it didn’t have to pay a deferred bonus for the previous year or other incentives. The executive, Amos Benaroch, worked at the French arm of a unit that was linked to many of AIG’s financial problems. The case is one of a handful remaining from the insurance giant’s near collapse during the financial crisis. — BLOOMBERG
Ralph Lauren stock jumps after sales results
Ralph Lauren Corp. stock soared nearly 15 percent after the apparel maker reported same-stores sales growth across all three regions — including in the key North American market — even as unrest in Hong Kong continues to temper sales. A drop in foreign shoppers in North America has recently weighed down the brand in its critical home market, but spending by domestic customers has helped counteract that decline, thanks to several investments made by management to revitalize the label. The brand has also seen more European and Brazilian travelers in its US shops, chief executive Patrice Louvet said, even as Chinese tourists continue to pull back. — BLOOMBERG
PG&E says wildfires could cost $6.3 billion
Pacific Gas & Electric reported substantial losses for the third quarter on Thursday, driven by catastrophic wildfires that have been blamed on the utility’s outdated transmission lines. The company anticipates those costs could escalate to as much as $6.3 billion this year. PG&E filed for bankruptcy protection in January to deal with an estimated $30 billion in potential liabilities from wildfires that its equipment may have ignited in 2017 and 2018, including one last November that essentially wiped out the Northern California town of Paradise, killing dozens. The company is also facing recent criticism for intentional blackouts that have left millions without power as it tries to limit wildfires during dry, windy conditions.
How much do you tip an ice-encrusted robot for your takeout?
Yandex NV, Russia’s largest Internet company, is rolling out a suitcase-sized robot that will attempt to deliver take-out despite Moscow’s winter snow storms. Similar to delivery robots used by Amazon.com Inc. or Starship Technologies Inc., Yandex’s Rover will focus on delivering meals ordered via Yandex.Eats, a food-delivery app part of a joint venture with Uber Technologies Inc., according to a statement Thursday. The robot is also being tested with a tough chassis to let it pass road curbs or drifts of snow without damaging its cargo. Rover will be able to distinguish between heavy snow or water splashes from real obstacles on the road. — BLOOMBERG
Cardinal Health to set aside $5.6B for any opioid deal
Cardinal Health Inc., one of the three major pharmaceutical distributors in the United States, said it will put aside $5.6 billion for a potential settlement over the company’s alleged role in an epidemic of pain pill addiction that has resulted in tens of thousands of deaths. States, cities, counties, and their lawyers have been negotiating for months with each other and with the health care companies they accuse of fueling the epidemic over a settlement that could eventually total in the tens of billions of dollars. — BLOOMBERG
Jobless claims drop to a four-week low
Filings for US unemployment benefits declined more than expected to reach a four-week low, another sign that a resilient labor market continues to underpin the economy. Jobless claims fell by 8,000 to 211,000 in the week ended Nov. 2, according to Labor Department figures released Thursday. The four-week average, a less-volatile measure, was little changed at 215,250. — BLOOMBERG