After Roe, Dems seek probe into tech’s use of personal data
WASHINGTON — As the Supreme Court ends constitutional abortion protections, four Democratic lawmakers are asking federal regulators to investigate Apple and Google for allegedly deceiving millions of mobile phone users into allowing collection and sale of their personal data to third parties. Friday’s decision by the court’s conservative majority to overturn Roe v. Wade is expected to lead to abortion bans in about half the states. Privacy experts say this could leave women vulnerable as their personal data could be used to monitor pregnancies and shared with police or sold to vigilantes. Online searches, menstrual apps, fitness trackers and hotlines could become rich sources of data for such monitoring efforts.
Federal Court blocks FDA ban on Juul e-cigarette sales in US
NEW YORK — A federal court has temporarily suspended a government order ordering Juul to stop selling its e-cigarettes. Juul had filed an emergency petition with the United States Court of Appeals in Washington so that it could appeal the Food and Drug Administration’s sales ban. The court granted the motion on Friday. The FDA said Thursday that Juul must stop selling its vaping device and cartridges. The FDA said Juul did not give it enough information to assess the potential health risks of its e-cigarettes. In its court filing, the company disagreed.
Airlines aim to blame flight problems on FAA
DALLAS — Ahead of the upcoming Fourth of July weekend, airlines are stepping up their criticism of federal officials over recent widespread flight delays and cancellations. Industry trade group Airlines for America said Friday that understaffing at the Federal Aviation Administration was crippling traffic along the East Coast. Airlines say they are doing everything they can to keep their customers happy, including hiring more pilots and customer service agents. Airlines are pushing back a week after Transport Secretary Pete Buttigieg summoned them to a virtual meeting and threatened to punish carriers who fail to meet consumer protection standards.
A world apart, Lebanon and Sri Lanka share economic collapse
BEIRUT – Lebanon and Sri Lanka may be worlds apart, but they share a history of political turmoil and violence that has led to the collapse of once-thriving economies plagued by corruption, clientelism, nepotism and incompetence. The toxic combinations have led to disaster for both: collapsing currencies, shortages, triple-digit inflation and rising hunger. Winding queues for gas. A decimated middle class. An exodus of professionals who could have contributed to the reconstruction. There is usually not a moment that marks the catastrophic breaking point of an economic collapse, although telltale signs can be there for months or even years. When this happens, the difficulties unleashed are all-consuming, transforming daily life so profoundly that the country may never go back to what it was.
Pilots in line for big increases amid global travel disruptions
DALLAS — The largest pilots union has approved a contract that would raise pilot pay at United Airlines by more than 14% over the next 18 months, potentially paving the way for similar wage increases across the industry. The deal reflects the influence unions currently hold with the industry facing a pilot shortage that has led to worldwide cancellations and fewer flights. The Air Line Pilots Association said on Friday the board overseeing relations with United had approved a two-year interim deal that covers about 14,000 pilots at the airline. The contract would need to be ratified by the base pilots to come into effect.
Romanian port struggles to manage Ukrainian grain flow
CONSTANTA, Romania — With Ukrainian seaports blockaded or captured by Russian forces, the neighboring Romanian Black Sea port of Constanta has become the main conduit for the war-torn country’s grain exports amid a food crisis growing world. It’s Romania’s largest port, home to Europe’s fastest grain terminal, and has handled almost a million tonnes of grain from Ukraine – one of the world’s largest wheat exporters and maize – since the February 24 invasion. But port operators say maintaining, let alone increasing, the volume they handle may soon be impossible without concerted support and investment from the European Union. “If we want to continue to help Ukrainian farmers, we need help to increase our handling capacities,” said Dan Dolghin, director of grain operations at the main operator Comvex in the Black Sea port.
EU leaders tackle Russia’s wartime inflation, energy shocks
BRUSSELS — A day after endorsing Ukraine’s bid for European Union membership, the bloc’s leaders turned their attention on Friday to severe economic turbulence from Russia’s war in the neighboring country as the conflict is deepening and the threat of recession is growing. The 27 EU leaders gathered in Brussels to deal with rising inflation, energy shocks, declining business and consumer confidence and growing fiscal pressures. Policymakers will also face higher borrowing costs as the European Central Bank prepares to raise interest rates for the first time in 11 years to counter runaway price increases.
The S&P 500 jumped 116.01 points, or 3.1%, to 3,911.74. The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 823.32 points, or 2.7%, to 31,500.68. The Nasdaq gained 375.43 points, or 3.3%, to 11,607.62. The Russell 2000 Small Business Index gained 54.06 points, or 3.2%, to 1,765.74.