Talking Points

TALKING POINTS

Partners and Lifespan call off partnership talks

HEALTH CARE

Partners and Lifespan call off partnership talks

Boston-based Partners HealthCare and the Providence-based health system Lifespan have called off their partnership talks. Partners is still planning to acquire another Rhode Island health care provider, Care New England Health System. That deal is pending approval from regulators. In February, Partners and Care New England added Lifespan to their discussions — without detailing what kind of three-way deal they were considering. “Lifespan worked creatively and tirelessly toward a potential partnership with Partners HealthCare and Care New England,” Lifespan’s board chairman Lawrence A. Aubin Sr. said in a statement Monday. “Unfortunately, Partners Healthcare and Lifespan could not reach an agreement and talks have ended. While we are disappointed, Lifespan remains focused on the health care needs of our community, with a continued commitment to providing world-class, compassionate care based in Rhode Island.” Partners is the parent of Massachusetts General and Brigham and Women’s hospitals. It is the largest hospital system in Massachusetts and has been trying to grow in other states as well. “While our current discussions with Lifespan are not moving forward, we are hopeful that in the years ahead we can continue to work collaboratively with them to ensure that patients in Rhode Island have access to excellent care,” Partners spokesman Rich Copp said in an e-mail. — PRIYANKA DAYAL MCCLUSKEY

SOFTWARE

Shares of Red Hat soar on IBM acquisition

Shares of Red Hat skyrocketed Monday after IBM, in the biggest acquisition of its 100-year history, acquired the software company. The $34 billion stock deal translates to $190 per Red Hat share — a 63 percent premium to the closing price Friday for the Raleigh, N.C., company. Red Hat Inc.’s stock soared more than 45 percent. The path for revitalization for New York’s IBM may be found in cloud technology, a driving force behind the blockbuster deal for Red Hat over the weekend. The deal requires the approval of Red Hat shareholders as well as US regulators. It is targeted to close in the latter half of 2019, but there is a good chance that others may wish to make a counterbid. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

AGRICULTURE

New England’s apple crop down slightly from last year

There have been a few bad apples, but New England’s crop of its signature fall fruit is only slightly behind last year’s. The US Department of Agriculture predicted earlier this year the six-state region’s apple production would be in line with a typical year. That prediction appears close to the target, as producers are likely to end the year about 10 percent behind the average of 3.5 million bushels, said Russell Powell, a spokesman for the Hatfield, Mass.-based New England Apple Association. The New England states don’t produce nearly the same volume of apples as major players such as Washington and New York, but apple season is a major tourism draw in the region. The warm, early fall weather kept some people away from pick-your-own farms, but it was still a productive year at the orchards, Powell said. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

TECHNOLOGY

Google to give $25m to AI projects aimed at a more human society

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Google will give away $25 million to projects that propose ways to use the artificial intelligence of computers to help create a more humane society. The grant program announced Monday is part of a broader Google initiative called ‘‘AI for Social Good’’ aimed at easing concerns that advances in artificial intelligence will eliminate jobs and perhaps even be autonomously deployed by militaries to kill people. Other technology companies have taken similar steps to address ethical issues in AI. For instance, Microsoft has committed $115 million to an ‘‘AI for Good’’ initiative that provides grants to organizations harnessing AI for humanitarian, accessibility, and environmental projects. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

FINANCE

Euronext shuts down on technical problems

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Euronext NV halted trading on its equities platform Monday morning, blaming technical problems for its worst outage since 2016. The exchange operator, Europe’s third-biggest by revenue last year, opened its equity market for just 10 minutes on Monday before shutting it down due to unidentified issues. Trading was suspended for about three hours, before resuming at 12:20 p.m. central European time. Yaniv Valik, vice president of product management at Continuity Software, said that a failure to move the clocks back an hour after the end of daylight saving may have been the reason for the outage. — BLOOMBERG NEWS

CONSUMERS

Spending up 0.3 percent in September

US consumer spending rose by an inflation-adjusted 0.3 percent in September, led by increased spending on health care services and motor vehicles. The Commerce Department also said Monday that the Federal Reserve’s preferred measure of inflation returned to the central bank’s 2 annual percent target after having been slightly elevated in prior months. In addition, personal incomes rose 0.2 percent in September — the smallest gain since June 2017. Roughly half of that increase was wiped out by inflation. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

GENDER

Few corporate strategies for promoting women, survey finds

There’s no shortage of corporate leaders who say they care about diversity and pledge to promote more women. The executives in charge of human resources, however, say there are few if any strategies for actually making it happen. Only 40 percent of US companies have action plans to advance women to senior leadership roles, according to new research in which 400 top HR officers in the United States and Canada were surveyed. The percentage is even lower in Canada, at 36 percent. And in both cases less than half — 41 percent in the United States, 44 percent in Canada — have strategies for hiring more women at the entry level to fill leadership positions down the line. — BLOOMBERG NEWS

ENVIRONMENT

UK plans to tax non-recyclable plastic packaging

The UK is planning a tax on the import and manufacturing of non-recyclable plastic packaging in response to growing concern about waste materials polluting the environment. Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond announced the tax in the 2018 budget, saying that he is still consulting on the detail and timetable for the changes. It will apply to plastics that contain less than 30 percent recycled material. He also said that he is considering to add a levy to single-use plastic cups. While plastic is durable, lightweight, and inexpensive, the material’s widespread use is harming the planet. Only about 14 percent of the world’s plastic is currently recycled, according to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. The rest is piling up in landfills, choking waterways, and hurting wildlife. It’s estimated that it will take up to 1,000 years for it to fully break down. — BLOOMBERG NEWS

AUTOMOTIVE

Fiat Chrysler rethinking move to stop making pickups in Mexico

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Fiat Chrysler Automobiles may keep making heavy-duty Ram pickups in Mexico, reconsidering a move President Trump has repeatedly touted as validation for his America-first policies. Chief executive Mike Manley told Reuters in an interview that the company could continue to build the big trucks at a plant in Saltillo, plus start assembling them at a factory north of Detroit. He said the additional output may be needed to continue gaining market share. Trump has repeatedly lauded Fiat Chrysler’s plan and pointed to it as evidence that companies are moving production to the United States from Mexico because of his administration’s trade, tax and regulatory policies. — BLOOMBERG NEWS