Business Briefs – February 14, 2019

Head of FEMA Resigning, Questioned Over Use of Vehicles

WASHINGTON (AP) – The head of the federal disaster response agency is resigning, months after an investigation found he misused government vehicles to travel to his home in North Carolina. Brock Long said in a letter to Federal Emergency Management Agency employees that he was resigning to spend more time with his family. Long was under investigation by the Homeland Security Department’s watchdog, and word of it leaked just as Hurricane Florence struck last fall.

Democrats Question Pledges in $26.5B T-Mobile-Sprint Deal

WASHINGTON (AP) – Democratic lawmakers challenged top executives of T-Mobile and Sprint over their pledge not to raise prices for wireless services or hurt competition if their $26.5 billion merger goes through. At a hearing by a House committee, the two executives defended the deal, which would combine the nation’s third- and fourth-largest wireless companies and create a behemoth about the size of industry giants Verizon and AT&T.

EU Adds Saudi Arabia, Panama To Dirty-Money Blacklist

STRASBOURG, France& (Reuters) – The European Commission added Saudi Arabia, Panama, Nigeria and other jurisdictions to a blacklist of nations that pose a threat because of lax controls on terrorism financing and money laundering, the EU executive said on Wednesday.

The move has triggered criticism from several EU states worried about their economic relations with the listed states, notably Saudi Arabia.

Despite pressure to exclude Riyadh from the list, the commission decided to list the kingdom, confirming a Reuters report in January..

The list now includes 23 jurisdictions; it previously comprised 16.

The Commission also added Libya, Botswana, Ghana, Samoa, the Bahamas and the four United States territories of American Samoa, U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and Guam.