Business Briefs – June 23, 2019

U.S. Blacklists 5 Chinese Groups Working in Supercomputing

WASHINGTON (AP) – The United States is blacklisting five Chinese organizations involved in supercomputing, calling them national security threats and cutting them off from critical U.S. technology. The move Friday by the U.S. Commerce Department could complicate talks next week between President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, aimed at deescalating a trade dispute between the world’s two biggest economies.

Fed Says Largest Banks Would Survive Crisis, in Latest Tests

NEW YORK (AP) – The Federal Reserve says that 18 of the nation’s largest and most complex banks passed stress tests and are strong enough to withstand a severe economic downturn. This year the Fed tested how well they would handle a substantial drop in commercial real estate prices as well as heightened stress in the corporate debt markets.

U.S. Home Sales Climbed 2.5% in May Amid Lower Mortgage Rates

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. home sales jumped 2.5% in May, as lower mortgage rates appeared to help buyers overcome affordability challenges. The National Association of Realtors says that existing homes sold at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.34 million last month. Still, the real estate market has yet to shake off last year’s slump. Home sales are down 1.1% from a year ago.

Mitsubishi Motors Shareholders Approve Ouster of Ghosn

TOKYO (AP) – Mitsubishi Motors Corp. shareholders have approved the ouster of Carlos Ghosn, who was pivotal in the Japanese automaker’s three-way partnership with Nissan and Renault until he was arrested on financial misconduct charges. Nissan owns part of Mitsubishi Motors. Nissan shareholders decided in April to oust Ghosn as chairman. He says he’s innocent of the charges.

Foxconn Chairman Stepping Down Amid Talks of Political Bid

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) – The chairman of Foxconn, the world’s largest contract assembler of consumer electronics for companies such as Apple, is stepping down amid speculation he could be planning a presidential run in Taiwan next year. Terry Gou made the announcement Friday at the company’s annual shareholders meeting. His resignation is the latest challenge for Foxconn, which has been caught up in the U.S.-China trade war.

Some USDA Researchers Reluctant To Move Cross Country

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) – Some U.S. Department of Agriculture researchers are reluctant to move across the country to the Kansas City area when two research agencies move there.

The USDA announced plans earlier this month to move the Economic Research Service and National Institute of Food and Agriculture closer to farmers and agribusinesses they serve. Many employees have objected to the move from the Washington D.C. area.

USDA researcher Andrew Crane-Droesch tells the Kansas City Star the move is out of the question.

“It’s a mixture of outrage and resignation,” Crane-Droesch said of morale at his office. “Nobody wants to move — nothing against Kansas City.”