Business Briefs – April 10, 2019

CEOs of Big Banks Face Off With House Democrats

NEW YORK (AP) – The heads of seven of the largest banks in the U.S. fielded sometimes contentious questions from a House committee Wednesday, some dealing with current risks to the financial systems and other focused on more politically-charged topics. The appearance by the chief executives of JPMorgan Chase and Goldman Sachs and five other banks represented the largest gathering of leaders of the banking industry before Congress since the financial crisis.

U.S. Budget Deficit Running 15% Higher Than a Year Ago

WASHINGTON (AP) – The federal government reported a $146.9 billion deficit in March, causing annual debt to rise 15% for the first half of the budget year compared to the same period in 2018. The Treasury Department says in its monthly report that the fiscal year deficit has so far totaled $691 billion, up from nearly $600 billion in 2018. The Treasury Department expects that the deficit will exceed $1 trillion when the fiscal year ends in September.

Most Fed Officials See Rates Staying on Hold for All of 2019

WASHINGTON (AP) – A majority of Federal Reserve officials last month believed that economic conditions would likely warrant keeping the Fed’s benchmark policy unchanged for the rest of this year. Several officials said their view could shift in either direction based on incoming data, according to minutes of the meeting.

Delta Profit Surges And Releases Strong Outlook

DALLAS (AP) – A new credit card deal and rising corporate travel boosted profits for Delta Air Lines in the first quarter, a trend it predicts will continue this spring. The company posted a $730 million profit, a 31% increase over the same period last year. The strong demand for corporate travel offset choppy demand from vacation travelers. Earnings adjusted for one-time items were 96 cents per share, 6 cents better than Wall Street expected, and Delta gave an upbeat forecast for the second quarter.

Amazon’s Growing Ties to Oil Industry Irks Some Employees

NEW YORK (AP) – Amazon is getting cozy with the oil and gas companies and some employees aren’t happy about it. The online shopping giant, which already works with BP and Shell, has been trying to woo more oil and gas companies to use its cloud technology and artificial intelligence to help them find drillable oil faster, angering workers who have been pushing Amazon to do more to combat climate change.

Yahoo to Pay $117.5m in Latest Settlement of Massive Breach

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – Nearly 200 million people who had sensitive information snatched from their Yahoo accounts will receive two years of free credit-monitoring services and other potential restitution in a legal settlement valued at $117.5 million. The deal revises an earlier agreement was supposed to be worth $50 million. The reworked settlement is part of the fallout from digital burglaries that stole personal information from about 3 billion Yahoo accounts in 2013 and 2014.