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GE and unions for 6,600 workers reach a deal

Negotiators for General Electric and unions representing some 6,600 GE employees have reached an agreement for new four-year contracts. The agreement was reached on Monday after 21 days of negotiations in Cincinnati after the previous four-year contract expired. Boston-based GE disclosed some details on Wednesday, including: three wage increases totaling $1.80 an hour; two cash payments totaling $3,000; a contract ratification bonus of $1,500; a promise of no health care contribution increases in 2020; and increased training and job placement support. The agreement still needs to be ratified by members of the 11 GE unions represented at the bargaining table. The group includes workers at the GE Aviation plant in Lynn and several other facilities in GE’s Aviation, Lighting, Healthcare, and Power divisions. — JON CHESTO



WeWork leases two more sites

Co-working giant WeWork is taking aim at another slice of Boston’s office market, launching two sites that it hopes to lease, in full, to mid-size firms as headquarters space. The company has leased 28,305 square feet at 99 Chauncy St., on the edge of Chinatown and Downtown Crossing, and 24,350 at 99 High St., in the Financial District, for its “headquarters by WeWork” program. Launched last year in New York and San Francisco, HQ by WeWork aims to lease entire floors to mid-size companies, putting the co-working firm in even more direct competition with traditional office landlords. While WeWork leases blocks of space — and in one case an entire office — in other Boston facilities, these will be the first specifically designed as such. The company, which leases desks and office space on flexible, month-by-month terms, is growing rapidly in Boston, with more than 1 million square feet across more than a dozen offices, making it one of the larger office tenants, and landlords, in the city. — TIM LOGAN


N.H. governor vetoes bill on auto emissions

Republican Governor Chris Sununu has vetoed a bill that would have required all the motor vehicles purchased or leased by the state to achieve zero emissions by 2039. In a veto message Tuesday, Sununu says the state is already making great strides toward that goal but should not set arbitrary deadlines that will unnecessarily drive up taxpayer costs. He says the bill would have had a $28 million impact in higher vehicle costs. Democrats responded that Sununu has no interest in bringing the state closer to a clean energy future. The bill passed the Senate with a veto-proof majority, but support fell short of that threshold in the House. — ASSOCIATED PRESS



N.Y. comptroller wants changes in Facebook’s corporate governance

New York state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli has written to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg demanding big changes in corporate governance. DiNapoli, writing in his capacity as trustee of the state retirement fund, said he will vote against the nominees for Facebook’s board of directors at next year’s annual investor meeting unless the company agrees to a series of changes, such as the selection of an independent chairman who has no material interest in the company. Zuckerberg has led the board since 2012. The retirement fund currently holds more than $1 billion in Facebook shares, making DiNapoli an important voice among shareholders. In the letter released Tuesday, DiNapoli says Facebook’s mishandling of personal data and slow response to false news and hate speech have exposed shareholders to increased risk. Facebook has not responded. — ASSOCIATED PRESS


European airports aim for net zero carbon emissions by 2050

An organization representing airports in 45 European countries said Wednesday that it plans to get airports to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050. Airport Council International Europe president Michael Kerkloh told a meeting of 300 aviation officials that the strategy’s launch aligns European airports with the Paris climate accords by putting climate change at the heart of business decisions. Kerkloh said 140 airports operated by 40 members have affirmed their commitment to the goal, while three Swedish airports have already achieved it. — ASSOCIATED PRESS



Harvard invests in litigation fund

Harvard University is committing more capital to a strategy that backs plaintiffs in commercial disputes. The strategy is run by IMF Bentham Ltd., a publicly traded company which last week finished raising $500 million for a fifth litigation fund that will focus outside the United States. Harvard, the world’s richest university, also committed capital to a $500 million fund that IMF Bentham raised last year to finance plaintiffs in the United States, according to the company. Litigation finance has made inroads with law firms and litigants around the world, with investors committing an estimated $9 billion over the long-term to the growing industry, according to Bloomberg Intelligence. The funds, which have been knocked for fueling more lawsuits, pursue strategies from financing cases against corporations to providing cash advances to individual plaintiffs in exchange for a share of settlements. — BLOOMBERG NEWS


French consumer group files class-action suit against Google over privacy

A leading French consumer group has filed a class-action lawsuit accusing Google of violating the European Union’s landmark 2018 privacy rules. In its filing Wednesday, the UFC Que Choisir group is seeking $1,135 in damages for each one of the 200 Google users involved so far. It’s among the first cases challenging tech giants over their application of the EU’s new rules, known as the General Data Protection Regulation or GDPR. Google did not respond to requests for comment. The complaint, filed in Paris, names Google Ireland and Google LLC. The consumer group says Google’s confidentiality rules are more than 1,000 lines long, and do not meet GDPR requirements to make it easy for users to block Google from things like tracking user’s location or sending targeted ads. — ASSOCIATED PRESS



Tests on grounded 737 Max reveals new safety risk

Tests on Boeing Co.’s grounded 737 Max have revealed a new safety risk unrelated to two fatal crashes that led to the grounding of the aircraft, and US regulators are ordering the company to make additional design changes. The Federal Aviation Administration discovered that a failure of a microprocessor on the jet could cause the plane to dive in a way that pilots had difficulty recovering from in simulator tests, according to a person familiar with the finding who asked not to be named. “The FAA recently found a potential risk that Boeing must mitigate,” the agency said in an e-mailed statement on Wednesday. The statement didn’t provide any specifics. While the issue didn’t involve the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System linked to the two fatal accidents since October that killed 346 people, it could produce an uncommanded dive similar to what occurred in the crashes, according to the person, who wasn’t authorized to speak about the matter. — BLOOMBERG NEWS



Supreme Court upholds precedent on federal agencies’ expertise

The Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld a longstanding precedent that says judges should generally defer to a federal agency’s expertise when ambiguous regulations are challenged. But the court’s conservatives, who have said that gives too much power to unelected bureaucrats, said the decision was ‘‘more a stay of execution than a pardon.’’ Chief Justice John Roberts joined the court’s liberals to preserve the precedent. — WASHINGTON POST