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TRANSPORTATION

MBTA raises $337 million in bond sales

The MBTA raised $337 million in two bond sales Tuesday, borrowing at the lowest rates in the transit agency’s history, officials said. The borrowings marked the first time the MBTA has put bond sales out for competitive bids in 21 years, according to Brian Shortsleeve, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority’s acting general manager. The money will be used to refinance existing debts that have interest rates more than twice as high. Online auctions held in the morning drew more than 15 large banks and Wall Street firms. New York-based J.P. Morgan Securities won the first bond deal, with rates averaging 2.4 percent. Morgan Stanley & Co., also of New York, was the low bidder on the second bond offering, with an average ratejust under 1.8 percent, according to the MBTA. Over the past two decades, the T has generally done directly negotiated bond deals with particular banks, rather than putting the issues out to a broader bidding group. With interest rates at historic lows, the financially troubled T will save tens of millions of dollars as a result of the bond refinancings Tuesday, Shortsleeve said. He and the Baker administration have been working to lower the cost of the T’s $5.2 billion in outstanding debt. In recent months they have eliminated a series of costly swaps that were hedges against interest rates rising. — BETH HEALY

BIOTECH

Ziopharm says patient death unrelated to drug

Ziopharm Oncology Inc., a Boston biotech company that last week reported that a patient died in a clinical trial of its experimental brain cancer medicine, Tuesday said an analysis by its safety committee concluded the death was unrelated to the drug. The death, from bleeding in the skull, was the third among the medically fragile patients taking part in the company’s early-stage clinical study of a gene therapy to treat glioblastoma, an aggressive brain tumor affecting about 74,000 people worldwide annually. The first two deaths also weren’t related to the drug, according to Ziopharm. Ziopharm, based in the former Charlestown Navy Yard, said it expects to report data from its study to the Food and Drug Administration as required by the study’s protocol and applicable regulations. The study will remain open for enrollment, the company said. — ROBERT WEISMAN

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AUTOMOTIVE

European officials impose record $3.2b fine for truck price-fixing

The European Union’s antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager (left) imposed a record fine of 2.9 billion euros, or $3.2 billion, on a group of truck makers on Tuesday, part of a trend toward steeper penalties for competition violations in the 28-nation bloc. The fine was for price-fixing and operating a secretive system aimed at delaying the installation of pollution-curbing exhaust pipes and engines. Less than a week ago, the European Commission, the bloc’s executive arm, announced a new round of antitrust charges against Google, on suspicion that some of the company’s advertising products had restricted consumer choice. The truck makers being fined are DAF, Daimler, Iveco, and Volvo-Renault. Daimler faces the largest single fine, and it must pay slightly more than 1 billion euros, also a record. Together, the five companies account for about nine in 10 medium and heavy trucks produced in Europe, the commission said. — NEW YORK TIMES

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INTERNATIONAL

EU court backs guidelines to prevent bailouts of troubled banks

The European Union’s top court backed EU guidelines designed to prevent taxpayers from footing the bill for bailing out stricken lenders, strengthening the hand of Brussels regulators as Italy fights to shield some bondholders caught up in the nation’s banking crisis. Tuesday’s decision is a show of support for the European Commission, which updated its crisis rules for banks in 2013 as part of a shift from taxpayer-funded bailouts to bail-in, the practice of imposing possible losses on investors before public money can flow.
— BLOOMBERG

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AGRICULTURAL

Monsanto rejects latest takeover bid from Bayer

Monsanto, the US maker of genetically modified crop seeds, on Tuesday rejected a revised takeover bid by Bayer of Germany as too cheap, an expected move that prolongs the bidding contest for the company. In response, Bayer said it was “disappointed” but that it was “looking forward to continued dialogue” with Monsanto. The rejection signals that Bayer, which is seeking to create a one-stop shop for farmers during a wave of mergers in the agriculture business, will have to work even harder to try to consummate a deal. In a short statement, Monsanto said that its board viewed Bayer’s new takeover bid of $125 a share in cash, up from an initial $122 a share, as “financially inadequate and insufficient to ensure deal certainty.” Bayer revealed its first bid in May and offered the revised deal earlier this month. — NEW YORK TIMES

CONSTRUCTION

New home building surges in West and Northeast

Construction of new homes posted a solid increase in June, led by a surge of building in the Northeast and the West. The Commerce Department said Tuesday that housing starts rose 4.8 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.19 million from a revised 1.14 million in May. The June reading was the highest level since February, but was down from 1.21 million a year earlier. Construction of single-family homes rose 4.4 percent to 778,000. Home construction jumped 46.3 percent in the Northeast and 17.4 percent in the West.
— ASSOCIATED PRESS

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GAMING

Nintendo earnings soar on the popularity of Pokemon Go

For Nintendo, ‘‘Pokemon Go’’ just keeps on giving. Shares in the Japanese game maker closed up 14 percent at 31,700 yen ($300) on the Tokyo Stock exchange Tuesday and have more than doubled in value since the wildly popular augmented-reality game was launched on July 6. Nintendo accounted for nearly one in four shares that changed hands on the TSE’s main board. The sharp rise has doubled the Kyoto-based company’s market capitalization to 4.5 trillion yen ($42.4 billion). ‘‘Pokemon Go,’’ a smartphone app that uses Google Maps to overlay reality with Pokemon creatures, was developed by Niantic, a Google spinoff that Nintendo Co. invested in last year. The game has yet to be released in Japan and most of Asia. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

TOYS

Mattel gets license for Jurassic Park toys

Mattel Inc. suffered a blow when it lost the “Frozen” toy license to Hasbro Inc. Now the company has turned the tables on its rival by nabbing the rights to the rebooted “Jurassic Park” series. Starting next July, Mattel will take over the toy line for the dinosaur franchise, which is owned by Comcast Corp., according to a statement on Tuesday. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed, but “Jurassic” toys generated about $100 million in sales last year for Hasbro. Entertainment licenses — especially ones aimed at boys — have become increasingly important in the toy industry, and Hasbro had secured many of the biggest. It owns the rights to Walt Disney Co.’s “Star Wars” and the Marvel characters. But Mattel, the larger of the two rivals, has been fighting back. It has a deal with Time Warner Inc.’s DC Comics and is developing toys around a growing roster of characters. That includes this year’s “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.” — BLOOMBERG

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