Business Briefs – June 24, 2019

China Says U.S.-China Trade Teams In Contact Ahead of G-20

BEIJING (AP) – Chinese and U.S. trade negotiators are discussing ways to resolve disputes ahead of a meeting between Presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping at the G-20 summit in Japan later this week, a Chinese official said Monday.

The sides were seeking to “consolidate the important consensus reached between the two leaders” in a telephone call last week, Wang Shouwen, a Commerce Ministry vice minister, told reporters. Wang gave no details about specific issues under discussion.

This week’s G-20 meeting in Osaka is the first opportunity Trump and Xi have had to thrash out the trade dispute face-to-face since Mr. Trump said he was preparing to target the $300 billion in Chinese imports that he hasn’t already hit with tariffs, extending them to everything China ships to the United States.

Supreme Court Rejects Early Challenge to Trump Steel Tariffs

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Supreme Court is rejecting an early challenge to President Donald Trump’s authority to impose tariffs on imported steel based on national security concerns.

The justices did not comment on Monday in leaving in place a decision by the Court of International Trade that ruled against steel importers and other users of imported steel who challenged the 25% tariff on steel that Mr. Trump imposed in 2018.

The importers argue that he does not have unbounded authority under the Constitution to regulate trade. They say that job belongs to Congress.

The legal challenge is at an early stage, before a federal appeals court has weighed in. The case could return to the Supreme Court later.

Trump Attacks Federal Reserve Again, Wants Interest Rate Cut

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump is continuing efforts to pressure the U.S. central bank system, saying the stock markets and economic growth would be much higher if not for its actions.

Mr. Trump says the Federal Reserve “doesn’t know what it’s doing” and raised interest rates too quickly.

The Republican president tweeted Monday “think of what it could have been if the Fed had gotten it right.”

Mr. Trump is encouraging the Federal Reserve to cut interest rates, saying “now they stick, like a stubborn child, when we need rates cuts, & easing, to make up for what other countries are doing against us. Blew it!”

What’s Your Data Worth to Big Tech? Bill Would Compel Answer

WASHINGTON (AP) – As Congress bears down on big tech companies, two senators are proposing to force giants like Google, Facebook and Amazon to tell users what data they’re collecting from them and how much it’s worth. The proposed legislation was floated Monday by Sens. Mark Warner (D-Va.) and Josh Hawley (R-Mo.). It comes as bipartisan support grows in Congress for a privacy law that could sharply rein in the ability of the biggest tech companies to collect and make money from users’ personal data.

Tariffs Weighing on Manufacturers’ Optimism, Survey Shows

NEW YORK (AP) – Manufacturers see the Trump administration’s trade policies as a bigger challenge than the economy. That’s one of the findings of a quarterly survey by the National Association of Manufacturers, or NAM, released last week. Fifty-six percent of the 689 manufacturing companies questioned in the survey cited trade issues including tariffs as one of their greatest challenges. Just over 31% said the economy was one of their greatest challenges.