Mass. business week in review: State opens door to health clinics

Patriot Ledger

State regulators opened the door to walk-in health clinics at CVS pharmacies by approving new regulations  for the “limited service” clinics that don't have doctors on hand. The first one was proposed for a CVS in Weymouth, although the Woonsocket, R.I.-based company is looking at opening several locations in the state this year through its MinuteClinic subsidiary that would be staffed by nurse practitioners. Doctors’ groups protested, saying that patients would get inadequate care by going to the clinics.

Hasbro to cut 200 jobs at game factory

Hasbro is taking some of the fun out of working at its board game factory in East Longmeadow with plans to cut 200 jobs there. The layoffs represent about 3 percent of the Pawtucket, R.I.-based company's global work force. The plant, where Hasbro makes  games such as Battleship and Monopoly, will remain the company's primary manufacturing center in the United States.

Talbots hires new chief for J. Jill brand

Talbots Inc. filled a key position in its management ranks by hiring Paula Bennett to run Talbots' J. Jill clothing chain at its Quincy office as its new president. Bennett will leave an apparel brand group on the North Shore to join Hingham-based Talbots later this month.

Holiday sales dismal, but not for TJX, BJ's

The nation's retailers reported the most disappointing holiday sales this week in five years, but a couple of Massachusetts-based companies that rely on bargain hunters posted gains. TJX Cos. and BJ's Wholesale Club both reported 3 percent increases in December sales at stores that have been open for at least a year while many retailers posted year-over-year declines.

Senate, House can't agree on energy bill

The state Senate passed its version of an energy reform bill that  would increase the amount of energy that utilities need to buy from renewable power plants. However, the Senate's bill includes some key differences from the House version, setting up a potentially lengthy conference committee negotiation between leaders on both sides.  

Foreclosures down, but still up over 2006

A Boston company reported that Massachusetts foreclosures dropped slightly in November from October, a possible sign that the rapidly increasing foreclosure rates around the state could finally be slowing down. However, the amount of foreclosure deeds filed in November still represented a 72 percent increase from the same time in 2006.