Jun 7, 2019

Fed chair Powell spoke to Trump in April, calendar shows

Trump walks with Fed chairman Jerome Powell in 2017. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

President Trump and Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell spoke on the phone on for 5 minutes on April 11, according to Powell's calendar released by the Fed, just days after Trump echoed other administration officials in publicly calling on the central bank to cut interest rates.

The big picture: It's not unusual for a president to communicate with the Fed chair, but Trump's continued needling to cut interest rates and departure from the presidential norm of respecting the Fed's political independence makes the dynamic between the two men unusual.

  • Trump and Powell also had dinner in February and spoke in March, the WSJ points out.
  • Powell, who spent more time in his first year as Fed chair meeting with members of Congress than his predecessor, had 7 meetings with lawmakers in the month of April alone.

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Coronavirus kills 2 Diamond Princess passengers as South Korean cases surge

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's

Two elderly Diamond Princess passengers have been killed by the novel coronavirus — the first deaths confirmed among the more than 600 infected aboard the cruise ship.

The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed more than 2,100 people and infected over 75,000 others, mostly in mainland China, where the National Health Commission announced 114 new deaths since Wednesday.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 1 hour ago - Health

Massive MGM data breach: Guests' personal details posted on hacking site

The MGM Grand hotel in Las Vegas. Photo: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

An MGM Resorts security breach last summer resulted in the personal details of 10.6 million guests published on a hacking forum this week, ZDNet first reported Wednesday.

Why it matters: Federal government employees and high-profile guests were affected by the breach, according to analysis by data breach monitoring service Under the Bridge and ZDNet — including officials from the FBI, Department of Homeland Security and the Transportation Security Administration, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, Microsoft staffers and singer Justin Bieber.

George Zimmerman sues Buttigieg and Warren for $265M

George Zimmerman in Sanford, Florida, in November 2013. Photo: Joe Burbank-Pool/Getty Images

George Zimmerman filed a lawsuit in Polk County, Fla., seeking $265 million in damages from Democratic presidential candidates Pete Buttigieg and Elizabeth Warren, accusing them of defaming him to "garner votes in the black community."

Context: Neither the Massachusetts senator nor the former Southbend mayor tweeted his name in the Feb. 5 posts on what would've been the 25th birthday of Trayvon Martin, the unarmed black teen Zimmerman fatally shot in 2012. But Zimmerman alleges they "acted with actual malice" to defame him.