The daily business briefing: April 23, 2019
Samsung retrieves samples of Galaxy Fold after reports of broken screens, Trump says Cain dropped out as possible Fed nominee, and more
Samsung takes back Galaxy Fold samples after screen problems
Samsung Electronics is retrieving samples of its Galaxy Fold smartphone from reviewers as it investigates reports of damaged screens, Reuters reported Tuesday, citing a person with direct knowledge of the matter. The South Korean tech giant took the embarrassing step of delaying the smartphone's launch, scheduled for this month, after several technology journalists reported that phones they received to review had screen problems including breaks and blinking screens after brief use. The problems with Samsung's first foldable smartphone, priced at $1,980, came after the even bigger and more costly setback it faced in 2016, when problems with exploding batteries forced the company to ditch its flagship Galaxy Note 7 smartphone.
Trump says Cain has withdrawn from consideration for Fed post
President Trump on Monday announced that former Godfather's Pizza chief and presidential candidate Herman Cain had withdrawn his name from consideration for an appointment to the Federal Reserve Board. Cain was one of two potential candidates for the Fed, along with economic adviser Stephen Moore, who had faced bipartisan objections. Cain's detractors said he was an inappropriate choice partly because his 2012 presidential bid imploded after old allegations of sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior resurfaced. Trump has faced criticism for trying to appoint loyalists to the central bank, which has historically been independent.
Trump sues to block House subpoena of financial records
President Trump and the Trump Organization on Monday filed suit against his own accounting firm and House Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) over his recent subpoena of the accounting firm and financial statements. The suit asks the federal court in the District of Columbia to block the subpoena and accuses Democrats, with their newfound control of the House, of waging an "all-out political war" against Trump, with subpoenas as their "weapon of choice." Cummings previously requested financial records from an accounting firm Trump and his business have used, Mazars USA. The subpoena was issued after Trump's former lawyer, Michael Cohen, testified that the president has inflated his wealth on financial statements, with Cummings seeking to corroborate these claims. The suit calls the subpoena "an abuse of power."
Trump administration ends Iran oil sanctions exemptions for allies
The Trump administration on Monday announced that it was ending exemptions for allies from U.S. sanctions against companies and banks linked to purchases of Iranian oil. The administration last year withdrew from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, which exchanged sanctions relief for the curbing of Iran's nuclear program. It granted six-month extensions to allies and key trading partners, including China, India, Japan, South Korea, and Turkey, in order to give them time to find alternative sources of oil to replace Iran's. The extensions will no longer be granted when the current ones expire on May 2, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said. The move could complicate trade talks with China, which buys half of the million barrels of oil Iran exports daily.
WNBA to broadcast on CBS Sports Network, doubling network exposure
CBS Sports Network announced on Monday that it will broadcast 40 WNBA games when the season begins next month. This multiyear deal is a major win for the women's league, as it will double its national TV exposure. "This partnership is one of the biggest and most impactful women's sports programming arrangements ever at CBS Sports," said CBS Sports chair Sean McManus. The WNBA's average viewership has steadily increased in recent years, going up 31 percent last year. The 23rd season opens on May 24, with the matchup between the Minnesota Lynx and the Chicago Sky being the first to air on the CBS Sports Network.