Business Briefs – August 19, 2019

Trump Calls on Federal Reserve To Cut Interest Rates

WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump is calling on the Federal Reserve to cut interest rates by at least a full percentage point “over a fairly short period of time,” saying that such an action would make the U.S. economy even better and would also “greatly and quickly” enhance the global economy.

In two tweets Monday, Mr. Trump kept up his pressure on the Fed and its chairman Jerome Powell, saying the U.S. economy was strong “despite the horrendous lack of vision by Jay Powell and the Fed.”

Powell is Mr. Trump’s hand-picked choice for the top Fed job.

He said Democrats were trying to “will” the economy to deteriorate ahead of the 2020 election.

74% of Economists in Survey See US Recession by End of 2021

WASHINGTON (AP) – A strong majority, 74%, of U.S. business economists appear sufficiently concerned about the risks of some of President Donald Trump’s economic policies that they expect a recession in the U.S. by the end of 2021. The economists surveyed by the National Association for Business Economics, in a report released Monday, mostly didn’t share Mr. Trump’s optimistic outlook for the economy, though they generally saw recession coming later than they did in a survey taken in February.

U.S. Extends Limited Reprieve on Tech Sales to China’s Huawei

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Trump administration has extended a limited reprieve on U.S. technology sales to Huawei. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross says the main aim is to give smaller U.S. internet and wireless companies that rely on Huawei more time to wean themselves off. Yet questions remain over how much of an effect broader sanctions are having on the Chinese technology giant.

Top U.S. CEOs Rethink the Meaning of Shareholder Value

NEW YORK (AP) – “The shareholder comes first” has for years been the mantra of the Business Roundtable, a group representing the most powerful CEOs in America. The group on Monday released a new mission statement that implies a foundational shift: a step back from shareholder primacy. The new mission statement on “the purpose of a corporation” emphasizes that all stakeholders are important and that includes workers, suppliers, customers and the communities where corporations operate.

Where’d All the Stocks Go? Nasdaq’s CEO on Shrinking Market

NEW YORK (AP) – The U.S. stock market has thousands fewer companies to choose from, and that’s doing a disservice to regular investors, says Nasdaq CEO Adena Friedman. In a recent conversation with the AP, she discussed what’s behind the trend and how it could be exacerbating income inequality. She also touched on how trading markets are striving to open up to the world, even as politicians push for more insularity.

Brand-Name Drug Prices Rising At Slower Pace, Lower Amounts

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) – Prices for brand-name prescription medicines are still climbing, just not quite as much. After years of frequent list price hikes, many drugmakers are showing some restraint. New figures from health data firm Elsevier analyzed by The Associated Press show fewer and smaller price hikes so far this year.

‘Codfather’ Settlement Means Magnate Will Never Fish Again

The federal government says it has settled its civil case against a fishing magnate known as the Codfather, saying he will never be allowed to return to U.S. fisheries. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said Monday its settlement with Carlos Rafael and his fishing captains will clear the way for Rafael’s assets to be divested. Those assets are embroiled in litigation. Rafael’s attorney did not return a phone call seeking comment.