Trump’s shakedown of TikTok, in the name of national security

The administration’s action is predicated on concern that Beijing could force TikTok to turn over personal data on its 100 million American users. But the tactics of the deal are baffling.

Mass. tech firms say they’ll redouble efforts to hire Black and Latino workers

The companies plan a combination of strategies, including tracking and reporting data on whom they are hiring and promoting, diversifying their boards, and improving recruiting.

Downtown’s surreal scenes in a pandemic summer

It has been quite a summer in the heart of Boston: quiet, a little lonely, and kind of weird. The normally bustling center of a city that just months ago brimmed with life, today feels like some lesser place. A place left behind, or suspended in amber.

Small businesses held out hope the fall would be somewhat normal. Not anymore. Not a chance.

Mom-and-pop companies are bracing for what could be tougher times ahead and undergoing another round of cost cutting and layoffs as they exhaust their federal loan money.

Latest Business headlines

Ford, struggling in a changing industry, replaces its CEO

Ford Motor said its chief executive, Jim Hackett, will retire Oct. 1, ending a three-year run in which the automaker has tried to streamline its operations and focus its business on electric cars, trucks and SUVs with mixed success.

Trump’s demand for US cut of a TikTok deal is unprecedented

President Donald Trump’s demand that the U.S. government get a cut from a potential Microsoft purchase of TikTok is the latest unprecedented scenario in an unprecedented situation.

Many retailers still waiting for more customers to come through the doors

With each passing week, you can't help but wonder how many more retailers will be able to hold on.

INNOVATION ECONOMY

Venture capital is still soaring, but the business is changing

The pandemic is changing some crucial things about how venture capitalists invest — and how startups use that money to hire — that could affect Massachusetts in worrisome ways.

Warren seeks SEC insider trading probe of Kodak

The former film company’s shares soared when it announced a surprise foray into generic drugs with help from a $765 million government loan.

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Top Places to Work

//c.o0bg.com/rf/image_90x90/Boston/2011-2020/2018/11/14/BostonGlobe.com/Magazine/Images/intro2018tptw.jpg The 2018 Top Places to Work in Massachusetts

These 128 businesses have the happiest employees in the state. Here are sortable lists of the winners, and how we compiled them.

STAT

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The private sector is unwilling to take on the financial risk, experts say, despite desperate need.

More Business headlines

People exercised along the south bank of the River Thames in London. European Union regulators have said they're opening an in-depth investigation into Google's plan to buy fitness tracking device maker Fitbit.

EU regulators investigating Google’s plan to buy Fitbit

European Union regulators opened an in-depth investigation Tuesday into Google’s plan to buy fitness tracking device maker Fitbit.

Stocks tick higher, but Treasury yields sink

U.S. stock indexes drifted higher Tuesday as Wall Street’s big rally eased off the accelerator.

Real estate executive lines up a corporate who’s who for a get-out-the-vote drive

This country’s low voter turnouts have always bothered Peter Palandjian. After the COVID-19 pandemic and waves of racial unrest overlapped this spring, he decided to do something about it.

TALKING POINTS

Virgin Galactic teams up with Rolls-Royce on engine for supersonic aircraft

Stories you may have missed from the world of business.

Virginia defense contractor with billions in sales got millions in pandemic loans intended for small businesses

Virginia defense contractor with billions in sales got millions in pandemic loans intended for small businesses

A company partly owned by Jared Kushner (above), President Trump’s adviser and son-in-law, sold a Park Avenue apartment in 2013 to a group including Kushner’s banker at Deutsche Bank. Deutsche Bank is now trying to determine whether that action was a conflict of interest on the part of the banker.

Deutsche Bank opens review into personal banker to Trump and Kushner

Deutsche Bank has opened an internal investigation into the longtime personal banker of President Donald Trump and his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, over a 2013 real estate transaction between the banker and a company part-owned by Kushner.

REOPENING DIARIES

‘The momentum we had been building basically just stopped'

Stocks rally worldwide, S&P 500 is back to within 3% of record

Budding improvements in the economy have helped the S&P 500 nearly erase its pandemic-caused plunge. So have massive amounts of aid from the Federal Reserve.

7-Eleven Owner to Buy Marathon’s Speedway Unit for $21 Billion

Seven & i Holdings Co., the world’s largest convenience store franchiser, agreed to buy Marathon Petroleum Corp.’s Speedway gas-stations for $21 billion, forging ahead with a deal-fueled expansion in the U.S.

More Than 1,000 Companies Boycotted Facebook. Did It Work?

The advertiser boycott of Facebook took a toll on the social media giant, but it may have caused more damage to the company’s reputation than to its bottom line.

TALKING POINTS

Stories you may have missed from the world of business

RETAIL

President Trump has said he would soon ban TikTok as a security threat.

Pompeo says Trump will take broad action on TikTok and other Chinese software

Pompeo’s remarks followed reports that Microsoft is in advanced talks to buy the US operations of TikTok, which has been a source of national security and censorship concerns.

NH startup is bringing diversity to the tech industry

Shtudy is an online employment service that connects tech companies with well-qualified workers of color. It also offers an assessment program to ensure that each candidate has the skills sought by employers.

Microsoft in advanced talks to buy TikTok’s US business

Microsoft is in advanced talks to buy the U.S. operations of TikTok, the popular Chinese-owned video app that has been a source of national security and censorship concerns, according to a person familiar with the discussions who spoke only on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity to the negotiations.

TALKING POINTS

The week in business

Some of the top stories from the past week.

Microsoft said to be in talks to buy TikTok, as Trump weighs curtailing app

Microsoft is in talks to acquire TikTok, the Chinese-owned video app, according to a person with knowledge of the discussions, as President Donald Trump said Friday that he was considering taking steps that would effectively ban the app from the United States.

Sanofi-GlaxoSmithKline vaccine effort receives $2.1b from federal government

State Street’s gold fund is ETF land’s biggest cash machine

This year’s frenzied rush for gold is turning out to be quite a boon for State Street Corp.

Florida teen charged in massive Twitter hack, Bitcoin theft

A Florida teen hacked the Twitter accounts of prominent politicians, celebrities and technology moguls to scam people around globe out of more than $100,000 in Bitcoin, authorities said Friday.

TALKING POINTS

Dunkin’ to close 350 more stores

Stories you may have missed from the world of business.

UPS surges most since 1999 on delivery boom spurred by virus

United Parcel Service Inc.’s second quarter results easily topped Wall Street’s expectations on pandemic-induced demand for e-commerce deliveries, health care equipment, and goods from Asia.

Hackers are targeting the remote workers who keep your lights on

With millions of Americans now working from home — including the people who help keep the grid running — cyberattacks targeting the power sector have surged.

Big Tech is worth even more the day after Congressional grilling

The four chief executives of Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google just faced a 5-hour deluge of probing and pointed questions from a Congress accusing the companies of various anticompetitive behaviors.

Kodak pivots to drugs after abandoning photography, crypto

Kodak plans to make ingredients for generic drugs, aided by a $765 million US government loan.

Office workers are increasingly being told to wait until January before they return

MassMutual, Tufts Health Plan, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, and Wayfair are among the major employers that have pushed back their return dates within the past few weeks.

COMMENTARY

The economy cratered as never before in April. What comes next is hard to say

The second quarter set a modern record for the biggest pullback in business activity.

Questions about underage vaping will be critical in the regulatory review for all companies that wish to market e-cigarettes.

Juul files key FDA application to keep selling e-cigarettes

The action is a highly anticipated milestone that will determine the fate of the once-highflying company.

Polar Beverages goes nationwide in blockbuster deal with Keurig Dr Pepper

The agreement allows the Crowley family to continue owning Polar, while giving Polar access to Keurig’s direct-to-stores delivery network and its manufacturing network.

Wall Street mostly stumbles, but tech’s strength limits the losses

Stronger-than-expected profit reports from UPS and other companies helped the market trim its losses through the day. So did steadying prices for Amazon and other big tech-oriented stocks.

Luis Rodrigues and Joe Tache in Roxbury.

At a time of racial unrest, Black workers’ union campaign becomes a battleground

A groundbreaking nonprofit is caught up in an old-fashioned union battle as a workforce emboldened by nationwide demands for equity confronts a management team grappling with structural reorganization and financial woes.

This Lynn nonprofit is known for its murals. Now, it’s making hand washing stations

Best-known for its contributions to public art, the nonprofit Beyond Walls is looking for a new niche that can help outdoor restaurants, construction companies, and community organizations keep their patrons’ and employees’ hands clean.

As Mass. eviction ban heads to court, it’s attracting attention nationwide

Chicago and Los Angeles are among the cities opposing an effort to overturn Governor Baker’s freeze during the pandemic.

There’s a Wrinkle in Stores’ Mask Policies: Enforcement

Christopher Vanderpool works shifts as a “health ambassador” at a Walmart in Fayetteville, North Carolina. For $11 an hour, he stands in the parking lot asking customers to put on masks before entering the store.

TALKING POINTS

For Boeing, a rough quarterly report

Fallout from the coronavirus also hit the bottom lines of Santander and but Shopify’s revenues almost doubled.

General Motors’ headquarters in Detroit. Even though GM reopened plants midway through the second quarter, production didn’t resume fast enough to stem losses.

Plant closings send GM to second quarter loss, but signs of improvement

Even though General Motors was able to reopen its US factories for the last half of the second quarter, the company still lost $806 million from April through June.

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said, “A full recovery is unlikely until people are confident that it is safe to engage in a broad range of activities.”

Fed sees dim economic outlook as virus squeezes economy

The Federal Reserve said it plans to keep its benchmark short-term interest rate pegged near zero.

GE’s aviation plant in Lynn. CEO Larry Culp told analysts that “we’re expecting a multiyear recovery in aviation.”

GE sees long recovery ahead after progress on costs, cash

General Electric Co. predicted slow gains in operations this year and next after the coronavirus pandemic battered results in the second quarter.

Wall Street rallies on as Fed keeps rates ultra-low

US stocks began rising as soon as trading opened, and momentum picked up after the Fed said in the afternoon that it will keep interest rates at their record low.

Treasury agrees to loan Postal Service $10 billion in trade for rivals’ shipping contracts

Treasury agrees to loan Postal Service $10 billion in trade for rivals’ shipping contracts

TALKING POINTS

American Airlines backtracks on face shields for flight attendants

Stories you may have missed from the world of business.

ECB urges banks to pause shareholder payouts for longer

The European Central Bank also urged banks to show restraint on bonuses after the coronavirus outbreak, dealing a blow to lenders who lobbied for business as usual.

Innovation Economy by Scott Kirsner

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Kirsner’s Innovation Economy column appears in the Boston Sunday Globe, and he contributes to the Globe’s Beta Boston website.