France’s prime minister is offering to meet with members of a motorists movement who have blocked roads over rising fuel taxes and held protests that caused damage to central Paris and more in Thursday’s Markets In Brief.

Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said on BFM television Wednesday that the protesters are expressing “a lot of legitimate things that should be heard.”

The drivers may ignore the outreach. Some are calling for a new action Saturday on the Champs-Elysees in Paris, where a protest last Saturday degenerated into violence.

The drivers denounce perceived elitism by President Emmanuel Macron, who failed to defuse the anger with a speech Tuesday explaining the environmental need for the tax hikes.

Protesters shouted at the minister for overseas territories, Annick Girardin, as she sought to calm tensions Wednesday on the Indian Ocean island of Reunion, where demonstrations have been particularly violent.


Lawsuit Accuses Toy Maker Hasbro of Misleading Investors

Pension funds are suing Hasbro Inc., alleging the toy maker misled investors about its financial health as executives sold millions of dollars of shares they held.

The Providence Journal reports the City of Warren Police and Fire Retirement System in Michigan, and pension funds elsewhere, have sued Pawtucket, Rhode Island-based Hasbro in federal court over losses they sustained in 2017.

Hasbro spokeswoman Julie Duffy says that the claims are meritless and that the company intends to “vigorously defend against them.”

The suit alleges Hasbro officials downplayed how much the company relied on sales from the now-closed Toys R Us chain and misled analysts and investors about poor foreign sales.

The suit also alleges Hasbro of artificially inflating its common stock price, enabling its executives to collectively sell their stock.

Cost of Keeping Asian Carp From Great Lakes Nearly Triples

A federal plan to prevent Asian carp from establishing themselves in the Great Lakes has gotten considerably more expensive.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers this week released its final strategy for placing technological roadblocks to the invasive fish at the Brandon Road Lock and Dam near Joliet, Illinois, a choke point between the carp-infested Illinois River and Lake Michigan.

The price tag is nearly $778 million, which is nearly three times the $275 million that the Corps estimated in a 2017 draft version.

Officials say further study during the past year showed that features such as a specially designed vessel channel, noisemakers and a water-flushing lock would cost more than originally believed.

After a public comment period, the Corps expects to send the plan to Congress in February.

Greek Police Arrest Dozens in Gold Smuggling Network

Police in Greece say they have arrested 63 people accused of running a major gold smuggling operation, using a network of pawn shops that rapidly expanded during the country’s severe financial crisis.

The arrests were announced Wednesday and police seized cash, gold bars, jewels and other valuable items worth an estimated 2 million euros ($2.3 million). The suspects allegedly exported much of the gold to Turkey — melting and recasting gold and using tour buses bound for Istanbul to transport it without paying taxes.

Police said two separate but collaborating criminal networks were involved in the operation for at least two years.

Pawn shops sprung up on commercial streets across Greece during the 2010-2018 financial bailouts, as Greeks suffered a surge in poverty and unemployment and successive hikes in taxes.

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