Business Briefs – November 28, 2017

Powell Says He Favors Loosening Some Bank Regulations

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jerome Powell, President Donald Trump’s pick to be chairman of the Federal Reserve, told senators at his confirmation hearing Tuesday that he believes some bank regulations can be rolled back — something the administration and Wall Street favor. But he stressed that he will protect the central bank’s political independence, calling it vital for the Fed’s role.

In Trump Health Secretary Pick, Dems Have Questions But Hope

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump’s pick for health secretary is a former drug company executive who already has drawn heat from Democrats over his ties to the pharmaceutical industry. But as Alex Azar faces his first nomination hearing, even some of those critics see signs he could shift the health care debate away from partisan confrontation with his reputation as a listener and problem solver. The former executive with Eli Lilly and Co. gets his first Senate confirmation hearing Wednesday.

EPA Hears Worries About Climate In Heart of Coal Country

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — The coal industry and environmentalists are squaring off at a two-day public hearing over the Trump administration’s intended repeal of an Obama-era plan to limit planet-warming carbon emissions. The Environmental Protection Agency is holding the only scheduled hearing on the reversal in West Virginia, a state heavily dependent on coal mining.

Supreme Court Wrestles With Whistleblower Protection Issue

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court seems reluctant to take a broad view of whistleblower protections passed by Congress after the 2008 financial crisis. The question the justices are wrestling with involves the Dodd-Frank Act, which protects people who report legal violations to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission from being fired, demoted or harassed. The question for the court is whether employees who report problems to their company’s management also qualify for protections.