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TALKING POINTS

Consumers warned of fake websites for Equifax settlement

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DATA BREACH

Consumers warned of fake websites for Equifax settlement

Consumers are looking forward to $125 settlement checks from Equifax Inc. stemming from a data breach two years ago. Hackers, however, are using the claims as another opportunity to steal their personal information. The Federal Trade Commission warned Twitter users Monday morning about fake websites. The tweet directed consumers to the commission’s Equifax page, where users can learn more about the breach, find out if their information was exposed, and file a claim. In September 2017, credit-rating company Equifax announced a data breach that exposed personal information for more than 140 million people, including Social Security numbers and birth dates. Last week, the commission and Equifax reached a $700 million settlement agreement, allowing affected consumers to file claims for free credit monitoring or a $125 payment. — BLOOMBERG NEWS

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SOCIAL MEDIA

Facebook’s Like button makes third parties responsible for users’ data, EU court says

Facebook Inc.’s Like button makes third-party websites responsible for processing people’s data under the European Union’s privacy rules, according to the EU’s top court. The EU Court of Justice weighed in on a dispute after an online fashion retailer was accused of violating EU law by embedding a Like plugin, which a local consumer association said allowed the social media company to collect data on the site’s users. — BLOOMBERG NEWS

GROCERY STORES

Stop & Shop to eliminate plastic bags in Connecticut

Stop & Shop says it is eliminating single-use plastic bags at checkout at its Connecticut stores. The announcement Monday comes as the state prepares to implement a new tax that will charge customers 10 cents to carry out purchases in plastic bags. The tax that takes effect Thursday will be in place until June 2021, when retailers will be prohibited from providing plastic bags. Stop & Shop has 91 stores in Connecticut. The Quincy-based retailer said it will offer paper bags for free during August, with a 10-cent fee on paper bags beginning in September. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

GASOLINE

Prices at the pump stable in Massachusetts

Massachusetts gas prices are holding steady and remain unchanged from a week ago. AAA Northeast reports Monday that a gallon of self-serve regular is still selling for an average of $2.70. The Massachusetts price is 3 cents lower than the national average for regular of $2.73, and also 12 cents lower than the local price a year ago. AAA found a wide range of per-gallon prices for regular, from a low of $2.45 to a high as $3.19. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

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AVIATION

Ryanair could cut flights and jobs because of Boeing 737 Max delays

European budget airline Ryanair says it’s looking at flight cuts, slower growth, and job losses if deliveries of Boeing 737 Max jets keep being delayed. CEO Michael O’Leary says on an earnings conference call Monday that the airline was supposed to get 58 Maxes by next summer. He used an expletive to say that could drop to zero if Boeing can’t get its act together and win regulators’ approval to put the planes back in the air. The Max has been grounded since March and deliveries suspended after crashes that killed 346 people in Indonesia and Ethiopia. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

INTERNATIONAL

non-vegetarian food growing more popular in India

India’s growing affluence is seeing its population turn more carnivorous, leading the country with the world’s highest number of vegetarians to import more corn for chicken feed than ever before. India’s growing population, rising disposable incomes, and changing food habits are boosting the consumption of non-vegetarian food, according to CLFMA, an association of Indian feed manufacturers. — BLOOMBERG NEWS

BANKING

Citigroup to lay off hundreds in trading division

Citigroup Inc. is preparing hundreds of job cuts at its slumping trading division as more of the world’s largest firms respond to dormant clients with layoffs. The firm plans to slash jobs across its fixed-income and stock trading business over the course of 2019, according to people familiar with the matter. That includes at least 100 jobs in its equities unit, which would amount to almost 10 percent of that division, said the people, who requested anonymity as details aren’t public. The biggest Wall Street banks are facing their lowest first-half trading revenue in more than a decade as they contend with reticent clients spooked by a global trade war and volatility in asset prices hovering around record lows.
— BLOOMBERG NEWS

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RESTAURANTS

Chuck E. Cheese will not go public

Chuck E. Cheese isn’t going public after all. The parent company of CEC Entertainment Inc., which runs Chuck E. Cheese and Peter Piper Pizza, will no longer merge with shell company Leo Holdings Corp. in order to go public on the New York Stock Exchange, according to a statement Monday. Leo’s shares soared the most since April 2018. — BLOOMBERG NEWS

MEDICAL HELICOPTERS

Consumers sue over ‘surprise bills’

The bankruptcy of helicopter operator PHI Inc. has transported the contentious issue of surprise health care bills to the steps of federal court, where a judge will weigh objections to PHI’s plan to exit Chapter 11 protection. Among them is a challenge by a group of consumers suing PHI’s air ambulance division over its billing practices. If their lawsuit is successful, the bankruptcy plan won’t work, they said in court papers. The objection highlights the mounting backlash over surprise billing — when patients are unwittingly billed huge amounts for care not covered by insurance. — BLOOMBERG NEWS

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GOVERNMENT

Former Trump appointee to CFPB cited for potential ethics violation

A former top Trump administration appointee at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau ‘‘may have abused his authority’’ and ‘‘misused his position for private gain’’ in an attempt to diffuse an article from The Washington Post about online posts in which he questioned whether the N-word was racist, according to an inspector general’s report. Before the article was published, Eric Blankenstein, a policy director at the CFPB responsible for enforcing the country’s fair lending laws, asked a subordinate to write a statement in support of him that also ‘‘created the appearance of a violation’’ of ethics rules, according to the report, which was obtained by The Post through the offices of Democratic Senators Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Sherrod Brown of Iowa. The subordinate, Patrice Finklin, told investigators she didn’t feel she had a choice and was given little time to write the statement in which she described Blankenstein as ‘‘collegial, thoughtful and meticulous.’’ — WASHINGTON POST

RIDE HAILING

Lyft’s operations chief leaving

Jon McNeill, who was hired last year to run Lyft Inc.’s operations, is leaving the company. The founders, who have struggled to retain an operating chief, said they won’t hire a replacement. Before joining Lyft, McNeill was a deputy to Elon Musk at Tesla Inc. He spent two and half years at the automaker, where he served as president of global sales and service. — BLOOMBERG NEWS

RIDE HAILING

Uber laying off 400

Uber is laying off 400 employees in marketing, about a quarter of the marketing team’s global workforce of 1,200 people. The move, announced Monday, follows a leadership shake-up in June when CEO Dara Khosrowshahi combined the company’s marketing, communications, and policy teams. The ride-hailing company has struggled to prove it can become profitable and its stock has traded mostly below its IPO price since its debut in May. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

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