Talking Points

TALKING POINTS

Northeastern to host Clinton Global Initiative University in the fall

HIGHER EDUCATION

Northeastern to host Clinton Global Initiative University in fall

Northeastern University will host the 10th annual Clinton Global Initiative University in October. The event, built on the model of the Clinton Global Initiative, will bring together students, faculty, entrepreneurs, and policymakers from more than 75 countries to develop solutions to global challenges in five categories: education, environment and climate change, peace and human rights, poverty alleviation, and public health. The three-day conference will include more than 1,000 students, who will participate in community service opportunities throughout Boston as a part of the conference. — SHELBY GREBBIN

POLITICS

Trump opponents want his Disney version silenced

Some critics of President Trump are so adamant in their opposition that they don’t even want a fake version of him to speak. An online petition was started last week, asking Walt Disney World to keep an animatronic Trump silent in its Hall of Presidents attraction. The attraction has animatronic figures of all US presidents. Recent incumbent presidents have recorded speeches for their animatronic doubles. The Change.org petition says Trump ran a campaign filled with hateful speech and he doesn’t deserve to have a voice at a place like Disney World in Florida. A Disney spokeswoman didn’t immediately respond to an e-mail and call seeking comment. The Hall of Presidents temporarily closed earlier this month so the new animatronic president could be installed. It reopens in June.
— ASSOCIATED PRESS

IMMIGRATION

Iraqis say order puts GE contracts at risk

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US diplomats have been told by the Iraqi government that two deals with General Electric Co. could be threatened by the immigration restrictions ordered last week by President Donald Trump, Politico reported on Wednesday. Iraqi officials told diplomats that the travel ban “called into question whether Boston-based GE and the US could be reliable partners,” according to a State Department memo cited by Politico. Trump issued an executive order on Friday halting all refugees from coming to the United States for four months, barred Syrian refugees indefinitely, and prevented citizens of seven majority-Muslim countries — Iran, Iraq, Yemen, Somalia, Sudan, Libya, and Syria — from entering for three months, even if they had valid visas. Trump said he took the step to protect the country from terrorism. Politico said the memo didn’t make clear whether the deals would be canceled as retaliation, or whether the travel ban might affect personnel involved in the negotiations or the actual work. The memo didn’t identify the contracts in question. GE could not be immediately reached for comment by the Globe. The company’s website says GE has done business Iraq for more than 40 years, with a presence in power generation, oil and gas, water processing, aviation and health care. Last month, the company signed $1.4 billion in contracts to build two power plants and supply gas and steam turbines to support Iraq’s electric grid. — GLOBE STAFF

MANUFACTURING

Factories grow at brisk pace in January

American factories grew last month at the fastest pace in more than two years. The Institute for Supply Management said Wednesday that its manufacturing index came in at 56.0 in January, up from 54.5 in December and highest since November 2014’s 57.6. Anything above 50 signals growth. Manufacturing has now grown for five straight months and for 10 of the last 11 months. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

AUTOMOBILES

US car sales slow in January

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US auto sales lagged in January as buyers recovered from holiday spending sprees, but the slowdown won’t last long. January is typically the weakest month of the year for US auto sales, and last month appeared to live up to that reputation. General Motors, Toyota, and Ford — the top three in US sales — all reported declines. But there are lots of factors that should boost demand in the coming months. Consumer confidence is strong, gas prices are low, and there are good deals on new vehicles with cool technology. Tax refunds will also spur demand. While sales aren’t expected to top last year’s record of 17.55 million, they’re still forecast to come in at historically high levels. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

EMPLOYMENT

Companies hire most new workers since June

US companies ramped up hiring in January, adding the most new workers since June, according to a private survey. Payroll provider ADP said Wednesday that businesses added 246,000 jobs last month, up from 151,000 in December. The hiring was widespread, with the construction, manufacturing, health care, and shipping industries all adding jobs at a solid pace. The ADP data cover only private businesses and often diverge from official figures. Economists forecast that the US jobs report, due Friday, will show a gain of 175,000, according to data provider FactSet. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

VIDEO GAMES

Rhode Island settles with final defendant in 38 Studios case

Rhode Island is settling with the final defendant in its lawsuit over the failure of 38 Studios, the video game company started by former Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling. The state Commerce Corporation said Wednesday it has agreed to a $16 million settlement with Dallas-based Hilltop Securities Inc., formerly known as the First Southwest Co. The settlement was filed Wednesday morning in Rhode Island Superior Court and is contingent on court approval. Schilling’s video game company moved from Massachusetts to Rhode Island in 2010 in exchange for a $75 million loan guarantee, then went bankrupt less than two years later. First Southwest was the state’s financial adviser on the deal. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

FOOD

Nestle to move
its headquarters from California
to Virginia

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Chocolate maker Nestle is moving its US headquarters from California to Virginia, relocating to a part of the country where the company says it has more customers. Nestle USA, a subsidiary of Swiss-based Nestle S.A., announced the move Wednesday in the Rosslyn section of Arlington County at an event with Governor Terry McAuliffe. Nestle USA is currently based in Glendale, Calif. Lisa Gibby, a Nestle representative, said there are about 1,200 employees at the existing headquarters. About 750 jobs are moving to Virginia and the others will head to the company’s divisions in Ohio and Missouri. Nestle expects to complete the move by the end of 2018. The Rosslyn headquarters will occupy more than 200,000 square feet of office space in the tallest building in the D.C. region. That building has been vacant since its 2013 opening. The Rosslyn area, just across the Potomac River from the nation’s capital, has suffered from a slowdown in federal job growth. McAuliffe has been working to diversify northern Virginia’s job base and reduce its reliance on federal spending. To lure the company, the state approved a $10 million in economic incentives and grants, and Arlington County contributed $6 million. Nestle USA said 85 percent of its top customers and 75 percent of its factories are in the eastern United States. In addition to candy, Nestle USA brands include Purina pet care, Perrier sparkling water, Hot Pockets frozen food, and Edy’s ice cream. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

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