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Photo: FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump met with about three dozen tech leaders for about half an hour in Davos on Wednesday morning, discussing education and the economy.

Why it matters: Apple CEO Tim Cook — who is tussling with the administration over law enforcement access to encrypted iPhones — delivered brief remarks, sources tell Axios. That suggests the controversy has strained their relationship, but not yet wrecked it.

The big picture: Trump and Cook have managed to work together despite disagreements on issues ranging from immigration to LGBTQ issues, as well as Apple's strong interest in avoiding tariffs.

What Trump is saying, per an interview with CNBC’S Joe Kernen on Wednesday:

  • "I like them a lot. I think we should do some encryption. I think we should — we should start finding some of the bad people out there that we can do with Apple. I think it’s very important. Frankly, I’ve helped them a lot. I’ve given them waivers, because I want them — it’s a great company, but it made a big difference.
  • "Apple has to help us. And I’m very strong on it. They have the keys to so many criminals and criminal minds, and we can do things. When they had the problem with the — recently in Florida. I won’t go into it, because it’s so horrible."

Details: Also speaking at the event was IBM chief Ginni Rometty, who has shared a close relationship with the administration. Both Rometty and Cook spoke on expanding access to skills training, an area of common interest to the industry and White House.

Go deeper: Trump rips into Apple for refusing "to unlock phones used by killers"

Go deeper

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
23 mins ago - Economy & Business

The fragile recovery

Data: Department of Labor; Chart: Axios Visuals

The number of people receiving unemployment benefits is falling but remains remarkably high three weeks before pandemic assistance programs are set to expire. More than 1 million people a week are still filing for initial jobless claims, including nearly 300,000 applying for pandemic assistance.

By the numbers: As of Nov. 14, 20.2 million Americans were receiving unemployment benefits of some kind, including more than 13.4 million on the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) programs that were created as part of the CARES Act and end on Dec. 26.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
43 mins ago - Politics & Policy

The top candidates Biden is considering for key energy and climate roles

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) has urged President-elect Joe Biden to nominate Mary Nichols, chair of California's air pollution regulator, to lead the Environmental Protection Agency, Bloomberg reports.

Why it matters: The reported push by Schumer could boost Nichol's chances of leading an agency that will play a pivotal role in Biden's vow to enact aggressive new climate policies — especially because the plan is likely to rest heavily on executive actions.

U.S. economy adds 245,000 jobs in November as recovery slows

Data: BLS; Chart: Axios Visuals

The U.S. economy added 245,000 jobs in November, while the unemployment rate fell to 6.7% from 6.9%, the government said on Friday.

Why it matters: The labor market continues to recover even as coronavirus cases surge— though it's still millions of jobs short of the pre-pandemic level. The problem is that the rate of recovery is slowing significantly.

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