House Democrats contend the $15 per hour minimum wage bill will lift workers who have not seen the benefits of a strong economy.Politicsread more
The Philadelphia Fed saw its primary gauge measuring the sector jump from 0.3 in June to 21.8, far better than Wall Street estimates of 5 and the highest in a year.Economyread more
Stocks erased earlier losses, but the rise was kept in check as Wall Street digested a mixed batch of corporate earnings results.US Marketsread more
"It's better to take preventative measures than to wait for disaster to unfold," Williams told the annual meeting of the Central Bank Research Association.The Fedread more
The fact that interest rates are relatively low makes the idea of a so-called insurance rate cut later this month an attractive option for the Fed.Market Insiderread more
Video of the event does not show the president disagreeing with his supporters. Instead, it shows that Trump paused as the chant began, allowing his supporters to continue...Politicsread more
President Trump said he's looking at the JEDI Contract that will be awarded to Microsoft or Amazon.Technologyread more
Hacker Square at Facebook's headquarters pays homage to the company's early motto of moving fast and breaking things.Technologyread more
It's tempting to view Netflix as a possible replacement for the entire media ecosystem. But execs on its Q2 earnings call showed lower ambitions: It just wants to create the...Technologyread more
These are the stocks posting the largest moves midday.Market Insiderread more
Jeffrey Epstein, a former friend of Presidents Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, had asked a judge to release him on a bond of as high as $100 million or more.Politicsread more
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Billionaire industrialist Charles Koch has waded into the battle over Big Tech.
Koch's sprawling network of advocacy and philanthropy organizations has quietly spent at least $10 million over the past four years to combat the backlash against new technologies and encourage digital free speech, according to a person familiar with the group's funding. The effort has encompassed grants to academics and think tanks, support for state and local legal battles, and political ad campaigns.
"In this time of disruption, people are wondering if they can adapt and succeed," Koch said in a video message to wealthy donors invited to the network's summer summit. "Our answer is yes."
The libertarian Koch network has long been a powerful advocate for conservative causes and a major funder for Republican politicians. But since the election of President Donald Trump, the group has distanced itself somewhat from the GOP and focused on building coalitions from across the political spectrum on specific issues instead.
Tech is one of the latest examples of that new strategy. The industry has come under fire from both sides of the aisle, and the network said it would not hesitate to cross party lines to defend innovation.
During the midterms, for example, the network spent $2.1 million on ads supporting then-Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley's challenge to incumbent Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill. Hawley won the election and has since emerged as one of the leading critics of the tech industry on Capitol Hill. Last month, he introduced a bill that would eliminate liability immunity for online platforms unless they get clearance from federal regulators — a potential death blow to internet companies.
The Koch network quickly issued a statement slamming Hawley's bill as "toxic" and argued it would "punish success in the next generation of innovative startups."
This spring, after presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., called for breaking up companies such as Facebook and Google, the group released an ad campaign warning members of the Senate Judiciary Committee not to use antitrust law as a "political weapon." The targets included Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., whom the network has otherwise staunchly supported.
"We believe technology greatly improves people's lives," said Jesse Blumenthal, director of technology and innovation for Stand Together, the Koch network's umbrella organization. "In order to facilitate that, we need cultural attitudes and policies that allow for experimentation. That's why we're taking a more active role in supporting positive tech work and holding government accountable on tech issues."
At the Koch summit, tech was a recurring theme over the three-day gathering. Donors could take a spin in a self-driving minivan. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai is scheduled to deliver a speech at the summit on Monday. And AOL founder Steve Case addressed the audience on Sunday and implored them to invest in start-ups outside of established bases such as California, New York and Massachusetts.
"That's my deepest passion — to move the world forward with science and technology," said Mark Johnson, who attended the summit and co-founded Descartes Labs, a New Mexico start-up that uses artificial intelligence to analyze global data. "Everybody here wants to change the world, and I want to help them."
The network has been attempting to recruit more tech executives to support its causes. Charles Koch's son, Chase, told donors on Sunday about his first meeting with Silicon Valley heavyweights.
"I went into that with, admittedly, probably a closed mindset. How are they going to view Koch? How are they going to view me? Are they going to be open? And I was blown away," he said. "We disagreed on a lot of key priorities and the way things are approached. But on the things we could agree on, we had such fantastic partnerships with some of those folks."
More broadly, the summit aimed to assure donors of the benefits of innovation and dispel cultural fears around disruption. It also extolled the importance of dialogue between disparate groups as essential to a functioning society.
"There is no greater advocate for free speech or free expression than this group," said Brian Hooks, chief executive of Stand Together. "Censorship and silencing those that we disagree with will never address the polarization that we all feel."