Fed chairman does not foresee recession

WASHINGTON — Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said Friday that the Fed is not expecting a U.S. or global recession. But it is monitoring a number of uncertainties, including trade conflicts, and will “act as appropriate to sustain the expansion.”

Powell gave an upbeat view of the U.S. economy during an appearance with Swiss National Bank Chairman Thomas Jordan in Switzerland. Powell said that trade policy is causing “some uncertainty” but that the U.S. consumer is in good shape.

“I would not see a recession as the most likely outcome for the United States or the global economy,” Powell said.

Powell was speaking at a conference sponsored by the Swiss Institute of International Studies at the University of Zurich in Switzerland.

Tech giants face more government scrutiny

SAN FRANCISCO — The government is circling the wagons around Big Tech as the scrutiny of its immense power intensifies.

Two groups of state attorneys general are joining the fray with separate investigations into whether Google and Facebook have been unfairly leveraging their array of popular — and free — services to dominate the lucrative online advertising market.

In some ways, the U.S. is simply trying to catch up with European regulators. Europe has come down especially hard on Google by imposing fines of nearly $10 billion for abusing the power of it widely used search engine, digital ad network and Android software for smartphones. Google’s corporate parent, Alphabet Inc., is appealing the Europe fines.

Experts say breakups are unlikely in the short term. U.S. Rep. David Cicilline, the Rhode Island Democrat leading the House investigation, has framed such measures as a “last resort.” Even so, Facebook, Google, Amazon and Apple could face new restrictions on their power.

CLEVELAND — Mallinckrodt, one of the leading manufacturers of generic opioids, says it is settling lawsuits with two Ohio counties over the toll of its drugs. The company will pay a total of $24 million and donate products worth another $6 million. The deal with Cuyahoga and Summit counties means Mallinckrodt does not have to be one of the defendants in the first federal trial over the toll of opioids, scheduled for next month. The company still faces hundreds of other lawsuits.

MIAMI — An American Airlines mechanic appeared in court Friday on charges of sabotaging a flight over stalled union contract negotiations. Federal officials say Abdul-Majeed Marouf Ahmed Alani admitted that he tampered with a navigation-system part on the plane also to gain overtime work. The July 17 flight from Miami to the Bahamas was aborted when the tampering caused an error alert.

DETROIT — A top United Auto Workers official is telling workers that bargaining with General Motors is moving slowly, with just eight days left before the national contract expires.

UAW Vice President Terry Dittes said talks have been slowed by the company’s responses to the union’s proposals. He told local union officials in a letter dated Thursday that the UAW remains committed to getting workers a fair share of profits earned by the company.

The four-year deals between the UAW and all three Detroit automakers expire at 11:59 p.m. Sept. 14. Last week union members gave their leaders authority to call a strike.

NEW YORK — Convicted former drug company CEO Martin Shkreli sued the son of one of his investors Friday in a dispute over losses from one of his failed hedge funds.

The suit, filed in federal court in Brooklyn, claims that after investor George Yaffe lost a $100,000 investment in one of Shkreli’s hedge funds in 2012, Yaffe’s son pressured him into making up for the loss by signing an invalid promissory note for $250,000.

The suit seeking unspecified damages says the son, Lee Yaffe, told Shkreli that paying back his father “was the ‘right thing’ to do and that Mr. Shkreli should ‘man up.’”

LOS ANGELES — Delta Air Lines began using facial recognition technology at Los Angeles International Airport on Friday, installing cameras at one boarding gate, with plans to add more.

Critics of the technology say the images collected by the cameras can be stored and used to violate the privacy of innocent people, and that the technology is more likely to misidentify women and people of color than white men.

Over the past 12 months, LAX has been a testing ground for facial recognition technology by various airlines and federal agencies.

The Associated Press

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