tv Bloomberg Markets The Trump Economy Bloomberg August 16, 2017 1:00pm-2:00pm EDT
other members include dr. thai because growth of the cleveland clinic. bob iger of disney was on the council but resigned earlier. here with the latest is bloomberg senior white house reporter. it seems to be almost a cascade at this point. when it comes to this strategic counsel, is this sort of jumping before you are pushed? margaret: you are right to say when wea turning point came out of the weekend and the merck ceo stepped aside from an advisory role. it was unclear whether we were looking at one people, two people. this is a much broader statement by a cross-section of ceos. it does seem that the effort in was to let the white
house know in advance and make a statement that there would not -- it would not be quite as embarrassing, but all of these executives have different reasons for wanting to step back , wanting to distance themselves. showing ait is message that corporate america is increasingly uncomfortable with president trump's rhetoric over a national strategy -- national tragedy. david: people was turning to single out jamie dimon. he does not have to do that now, they have shut the whole thing down. ofgaret: that is the case the strategic counsel, but whether you are just someone who comes to the white house once in a while, and will appear with the president at a public event, will suggest or promote or steer policy issues, the question going forward goes beyond these advisory councils and goes to
whether the relationship between this president and this white house and major u.s. ceos is now going to be permanently affected or whether this is a temporary positioning in the short-term and a lot of that may have to do with the president's actions going forward. it may have to do with what kind of businesses these ceos represent, whether they are government contractors or outpacing businesses that have a brand and our marketing to diversity -- and are marketing to diversity. we see a lot of different considerations that were, but this is now more than just one or two executives. david: you raised a very good question. it is not good optics for the president. is it anything more than optics because even when these councils were going full steam, the president would tweak out things and could be critical of some of the companies who are represented on the council. margaret: that is right and we
saw a separate matter today with the president's tweets about amazon. think that is part of the consideration, but this is a fluid situation and when you some of the ceos have had a close consulting relationship with this white house and others have at least agreed to add their names to the mix, saying to varying degrees that they are just increasingly uncomfortable with the way this situation has been handled and reluctant to tie their own names or their company's name to the decision-making process. it really is a matter of concern and in terms of what it could mean, the question is when lawmakers come back from the august recess, when the president tries to work with congress to deal with issues like raising the debt ceiling and whether there is tax reform released a tax cut by the end of the year, it is at that point
that selling these ideas, getting buy-in from key stakeholders in the business community as well of the political community is going to be important. david: terribly important. i know the white house was tonting on corporate ceos really rally the troops across the country on tax reform. as a practical matter, aren't they going to support it anyway? margaret: the devil is in the details. part of the reason there has been this patient's extended or the feeling that it has been important to work with the administration is to try to get some of these things done in terms of tax reform and tax cuts and also more broadly on issues like infrastructure. you are seeing gary cohn's, steve mnuchin, some of the top names that have been trying to work with corporate america and the business community in terms of rallying around the policies to pursue and how to pursue them. this is a new challenge, going
forward. david: thank you so much, bloomberg's senior white house reporter from washington. what are the implications for ceos when they are deciding whether to speak out against the president or not? today, i spoke with former u.s. treasury secretary larry summers. whoy: there were some ceos fear the president's retaliation against their company, if they resign. that is why i advised a number of ceos who asked me, not to join president trump's councils because i told them i think things will happen with good probability that will make you want to resign. david: for more on the ceo fallout, we turn to former gutierrez,, carlos now a cochair of the albright stonebridge group and he joins us from washington.
welcome back. but yourself back in your ceo job. wood -- yourself back in your ceo job. yourself back in your ceo job. would you had join one of these councils? carlos: i would not, i think were ceos are going to get their biggest pressure will be from employees. corporate america, for the past 20 years has been working hard to develop an environment of tolerance, respect and diversity. now i think employees are looking up to the top floor and saying are you going to walk the talk? that is thect that mounting pressure, first and foremost that will happen in companies, will come from their employees and things that have been put in place precisely because corporate america is in favor of a tolerant, accepting
society. summers,lking to larry one of the questions he asked is if you would not resign given what has happened, when would you ever resign? you almost have no choice. you have the president of the united states saying neo-nazi is an is equivalent the people protesting on the behalf of rights and civil liberties. would you have any difficulty at this point stepping down? carlos: i think it would have been a very easy decision. it is easy for me to say that because i am not a ceo. corporate america, this is not tolerated in corporate america. these things are totally taboo. we think that washington is very much ahead of the game, but corporate america has been on diversity for decades. this kind of talk is not tolerated.
it is the kind of thing where i think that ceos will have to speak out because i said the pressure is coming from within, not just from the media, but from within and then companies who stay. i think they have to be worried about association. in this case, if you are associated with the president after these remarks, does that mean you endorse those remarks? those are things that will play into decision-making. i think you will see decisions dribbling out as companies get more feedback, internally and from consumers. david: if you were back in a cabinet position and you were advising the president, this president, what would you advise him at this point? we had steve mnuchin, we had gary cohn's. -- gary cohn.
what could you do to improve this situation? politically, i believe the president is focused on his base. he is very reluctant to dismiss his base, to go up against his base. i think the president's big opportunity and what he has to do if he wants to keep his job is expand his base. this is just going to shrink it even more. the more that we are focused on these battles and on these conflicts, the less we are focused on tax reform, legislative reform, regulatory reform, all things the president wants to do to grow the economy. that is not getting done. these conflicts are filling up the airwaves and the real job to be done for the country is not being done. david: many thanks, carlos gutierrez. we are getting back to you.
we want to get a check on where markets stand. abigail doolittle is here with the latest. abigail: looking at moderate to solid gains for the averages even with that news in the last half-hour. we do have the dow and the s&p by and the nasdaq all up 3/10 of 1% or more. two things really stand out about these gains. the markets are completely disconnected from trump politics, considering that colorful press conference, yesterday and the geopolitical concerns of north korea is a bigger concern. they have cool down -- cooled off, but it is interesting that markets are to some degree disconnected from president trump's politics. this is a intraday chart of the s&p 500 and we see that the index took a small leg lower at
that headline crossed, about the fact that president trump's strategy and policy council is said to be disbanding following a controversial press conference. if we take a look at the 10 year yield, it is actually falling for the first time in three -- showing that we are seeing a bit of a haven bid among these headlines and moving parts. here we have that up-and-down represented in green, telling us that haven bounds are -- haven bonds are rallying. david: coming up, nafta renegotiation talks kicked off in washington and already, the discussion is getting heated. ♪
david: this is bloomberg markets: the trump economy. nafta renegotiations have begun and the president's top trade negotiator made it clear that the united states is looking for more than just some little tinkerers. carlos gutierrez is here with us. he has long been a champion of free trade and of nafta. the same time, you have said there is room for revision. there is some modernization, but you want it done fast. is it doable? carlos: it is. it depends on expectations. i would expect that ambassador 's comments were a good stance to take before the negotiations start. nafta needs to be modernized. it needs to be updated, but it does not need to be renegotiated and there is a big difference.
should get it done as quickly as possible, is that there are elections, the mexican presidential election takes place in 2018. if there is a sense that the president and the political party he represents was allowed to be bullied by the u.s., by president trump, then we may end up in 2018 with a very far left populist anti-american president in mexico. that is not good for our country or nafta. that would be taking a step back. i think we have to look at more variables than just the trade deficit, which i think is the wrong focus of these negotiations. just bear with us because we have something crossing the bloomberg. president trump has decided to disband the manufacturing council, altogether. we had sources saying he would be disbanding the strategic
counsel. in manufacturing council was the one that can't fraser -- that can fraser -- that ken fr\ azier of merck had stepped out in. sorry for the interruption, but news happens as you know. this seems like a wise move at this stage for the president. itgaret: it seems -- carlos: seems like a preemptive strike because the writing is on the wall and even ceos who have stayed so far will probably have to leave because the pressure will mount and that is very embarrassing for the administration, so this is a preemptive move before that happens and probably the right thing to do. david: from your experience having run a major cabinet
department, how influential is the business community with the government customer we had the president coming in, saying he would have a special relationship, but in general is there a influence that ceos have with the administration? carlos: some ceos whose voices were heard, they would have to be balanced out with other groups, but typically on at -- economic policy, the business community would have a strong voice. they are the ones driving the economy and they would be affected. today we are going to talk about nafta. i'm sure the business community is very concerned about these negotiations. to start with, the president jake the president's agenda was not always pro-business. he talked about tax reform. business loves that. not immigration and now when he is talking about lowering legal immigration by 50%, the business community sees that as a
disaster for our economy. declaring a certain amount of warfare against trade is very antibusiness. there is a part of the agenda that is pro-business. there is a part of the agenda that worries business. david: how much does the president need business to support him to get his agenda through? carlos: you think about all the people who work for businesses. those are voters and those are people who will go out and make a decision. if their concern that the policies are impacting employment, impacting wage growth, impacting benefits, then yes, they will revolt as well. we need to remember that ceo,rations don't equal the equal thousands and thousands of people who rely on the success of that company to get ahead. that is a factor that we need to keep in mind.
companies will be affected by these policies and employees will be affected. david: from your estimation. you are saying there were good things the president could get done that would help the country. how much has he undermined his ability to do it or is it still early enough he could turn this around? carlos: i think it has been undermined quite a bit. early enough might have been two months and is administration. if you think about tax reform and the things he wants to get done, there may be some reluctance among members of congress to be too close to the white house, to have their name on a bill, so i think this will hold things up and the more this stays alive, the more it will take up the time with congress, with the media and the administration instead of focusing on the real hard work
which is tax reform. this is not going to be easy as we saw in the affordable care act, none of this is going to be easy, but it is not getting done. i believe that the honeymoon is over and i think yesterday's press conference may be what we .2 and say that is when the honeymoon ended -- what we point to and say that is when the honeymoon ended. gutierrez, cochair of the albright stonebridge group. thank you. the s&p 500 has dipped to lose -- to new lows. gold is dropping. this coming as president trump says he is disbanding all caps on's. -- all councils. ♪
lows and gold is spiking after president trump's comments on disbanding his various councils. holtz-eakin now heads the american action forum and joins us from washington. great to have you with us. this is breaking news we just had. all the councils are gone. you know washington well. what is the practical effect of all this? how bad is this damaging the president's agenda? douglas: there are no winners here. for the white house, it is a political black eye. they had these councils as visible signs of support from the business community. mr. trump was a businessman before being president. this was important to his constituency. this is damaging to them. it is also a loss to the business community. this was their ability to influence white house policy. that agenda is not always in the
business community's favor, so they had a chance to weigh in and moderate the things they did not like and certainly on things like tax reform, not all things are created equal. it was a big opportunity for them. they lose the opportunity to influence the policy process and the white house loses visible political support. david: it strikes me that there is some irony here. we have heard members of the business community complain about the obama administration. if anything, they were perceived as antibusiness. a lot of business leaders really cheered for donald trump to come in because they were finally going to have one of theirs who they would really understand. ironically, it feels like their relationship might be worse than ever. douglas: it is a deep ironic moment. there has always been a bit of a disconnect between the byortunity represented
donald -- by president trump and his ability to carry republican majorities. the business community was quite excited about that. conduct of the campaign and the conduct of the presidency itself. a lot of reservations about the rhetoric and the style and presentations of the president. his unwillingness to be disciplined and stay on message. that has always been a cause of concern and in this case, the latter has outweighed the former. david: you know congress well. does this make one bit of difference to congress? are they going to vote on tax reform or not? douglas: i think it makes an enormous difference. what congress needs more than anything else is a white house that is willing to give it the air coverage to get their votes and for a president to stand up and say they are proud of representative ask or senator why -- representative x or senator y. david: do you have a sense of
what the attitude is, particularly among the kind -- republicans in congress? douglas: there is some combination of continued loyalty for those who quite frankly would not have their job without the president and his candidacy, weariness on the part of the mass majority and the beginnings of outright rebellion because they are unhappy with his conduct. david: many things from douglas holtz-eakin. he will be staying with us as we cover this breaking news story. this is bloomberg. ♪
major averages in the u.s. the threeoting that major averages are near session lows off the highs and a stream of headlines over the last half hour. president trump tweeted saying that both the manufacturing council and the advisory council are disbanded. we see a leg lower for the s&p 500 over the last half hour. up a little bit less than .2%. we do still have gains. this is not a panic. david at main street capital saying something very interesting after that controversial press conference yesterday. are releasing a disconnect on the part of investors between andident trump's politics the equity markets. investors are instead focusing on the earnings outlook. let's take a look at the 10 year yield.
down about three basis points. uncertainty entering the picture on these headlines. telling us that investors are going toward buying bonds. gold had been down on the day but now at session highs up about .5%. a haven play happening in the context of headlines in some uncertainty for investors. david: a bit of risk off. breaking news. bloomberg broke the story. we had a source that said the president was going to stop his strategic counsel. the president tweeted and said, not just the strategic counsel. let's do away with all of the various councils. we are joined by marty schenker
and douglas holtz-eakin still with us. us a sense. you are at ground zero in washington. what is the level of chaos within the beltway? >> it is relatively high even for this administration where anxiety seems to be the state of play always. donald trump not unfamiliar with divorce, just divorced big business. at least to some have to do it in a courtroom. an administration that heralded its relationship with business at its beginning is quite striking how he is basically saying it's over. the romance with big business is done. david: what are the ramifications on the hill? had a verynt aggressive ambitious agenda when he came into office that he needed congress to support him on. what are his chances of getting it through congress anytime soon? >> i don't know the business
council is anything more than symbolic. councils weren't meeting regularly. the strategic counsel i think met once. i do think that businesses will an agenda that moves through congress. infrastructure, making sure we don't shut down the government. they will be supportive of those things. see a real liability and aligning with this president for their own businesses and their own personal legacy. david: douglas holtz-eakin, tell us about that. lobbyists helped get a lot of work done in washington and take a very high quality one, business roundtable. does this affect your strategy at all on tax reform for example? doesn't change very much because the starting point is the house of representatives.
it's going to have to originate there and you don't get tax reform done if you don't do it through the house. the first steps were always congressionally oriented. they will support the members who are supportive of tax reform. in the white house plays into that only in the will have a say and policy and the kinds of messaging that go out to the average american. they really need the president to be out there saying we want this tax reform. important element. it doesn't change the business community strategy that they need to work with them first. david: this shows how breaking news can be confusing. j&j thing they are dropping out of the council after the president said he has to spend at the council. i'm not sure whether they jumped or they were disbanded. we want to go to jennifer epstein. welcome to the program. what is the attitude around the president right now? is there a sense of confusion or disarray? a mix of things.
it really depends on who you ask at this point in time. certainly some of his top aides like c-span -- steve bannon who are really happy. there are a lot of people who are worried who do think that the president has not handled the situation well. that sort of tension that happens in the white house, the president seems to be happy with how things are going which is really striking considering how many critics on the outside are not at all. david: more headlines crossing the bloomberg right now. larry fink has disclosed his decision that he can no longer serve in good conscience on the presidential council. having seen this exactly. the president saying, we don't
have this counsel anymore. the ceos are rushing out saying by the way, we quit. >> everyone is rushing to the moral high ground. those that said they were gone before trump disbanded it ring a little less authentic. everybody wants to get on record. trump's performance yesterday forced people to take a stand and they are now doing it. ceos were equivocal and now they can't be. david: what does this mean for the republican leadership in the house? when you talk about the paul ryan's or the mitch mcconnell's, what are their options? i think it's very simple from a policy point of view. they will simply say their piece about the president's performance. paul ryan was very clear about that. and most of the nuts and bolts of tax reform. from a political point of view they have to be very careful to see if there's going to be an
emerging divide between the base which is largely still quite content with the president and his performance and those independent who view the president very differently. that divide is going to be the key want to negotiate. jennifer, the president has announced he's going to have a rally in phoenix on tuesday in the evening. is this the president trying to get a hold of his agenda again? >> i think it really is an acknowledgment of how much of a face plant he has hit in the last few days. this is really reinforcing that he is not trying to bring the whole country together. he's trying to rally up the people who already support him and galvanize them. time when there are various challenges working through the court related to deportation policy. this is the fifth anniversary of daca.
to go to arizona at this point in time is certainly a way to reinforce where he stands on those things which are very closely related to race. , i see you are not in your head. you have seen different presidents deal with situations different ways. there was a sense that carlos gutierrez just said he felt the president started out with too narrow of a base. needed to expand. is he really going the other way? not whether we have these councils or not. the president is really doubling down on a narrower and narrower base. it is significant. i don't think we should be surprised. we have seen this many times before getting with his candidacy. he is a man who does not believe in bad publicity. things that happened in the campaign that under normal circumstances aides would be scurrying to clean up.
news conference yesterday is entirely consistent with what we have seen before. he spent the entire time appealing to that base in the campaign. he has done it since he got elected. those are expected him to somehow changed his tactics and acquire a new personality were deceiving themselves. this is the man we elected. , marti shankeru and jennifer epstein and douglas holtz-eakin. thank you for joining us today. live from new york and washington, this is bloomberg. ♪
david: this is bloomberg markets: the trump economy. a beautiful shot overlooking manhattan. things seem relatively tranquil compared with what is going on in washington, d.c. we had some news -- bloomberg broke this. that the president will be shutting down his strategic counsel of ceos. also theweeted manufacturing council. that is the one that got so much attention earlier this week when andceo of merck withdrew other people piled on. it appears the president has shut down both councils and immediately we had ceos such as larry fink come out and say, i'm quitting. it has been a tumultuous few minutes. we're joined from washington by maggie gage, head of washington research at credit suisse.
you must understand what's going on down there. right now i'm confused. >> understand is a broad term i guess. i think this might be slightly a missed opportunity here. had greate council potential. at the same time regardless of whether the council is together or disbanded democracy doesn't happen in a vacuum and whether we are talking policy on tax infrastructure or a budget bill, there are still plenty of ways whether it's the business community or to influence the political process. while this is a missed opportunity to see the council disbanded before it realized its full potential i don't think it's a complete loss as far as information added to the process and the policymaking. david: putting aside the councils. there was a lot of show about them.
we saw a lot of video in the early days of the white house and we haven't seen much of them lately. is it too much to be thinking about whether it's a symptom of a broader situation? in order to get legislation through on difficult things like health care, tax reform, you need to be able to pull people together. you need to be able to really lead. and the president seems to be having a little difficulty pulling groups of people to dividingopposed people. is that too much to read into the situation? >> that's a great question. i'm not sure we can put all of that on the president. this is new territory in washington, d.c. for everyone. is still kind of learning and feeling their way through this new experience that we are having here in d.c. see is moreblems i symptomatic be on the president and his administration. they are new to this process. they are from the business
world. they are not from the government world. there was going to be a bit of a learning curve. in the meantime one of the point have thiss, we situation where all the bills we see in congress are very large. they are huge bills. without the amendment process which has largely been shut down we don't have any negotiation process and we don't have any ability to trade this to trade for that. until we get back to opening the process to amendments and having normal order and letting bills move through the committee process i think that we remain in this stagnant situation. david: let me cut to the chase. earlier today i got a chance to talk to larry summers and i asked him whether he felt the chances of tax reform, something he is in favor of, or lower today than they were 24 hours ago before the news conference. what is your assessment? are the chances going down or is it irrelevant? >> i think this is irrelevant in terms of tax reform.
tax reform is not going to happen in a vacuum with or without the council. this is going to be a congressional effort largely. the president will weigh in and have his priorities marked in the process. in the meantime this will start in the house and flow to the senate. members of the business community all interested parties have begun to weigh in and will continue to weigh in on that process. i don't think the odds have changed today anymore in light of this news. we still think tax reform will get underway. we believe healthways and mays -- health ways and means chairman -- they will be commemorating the act as well as doing a public kickoff on congressional efforts of tax reform. we think the process will begin with some vigor throughout the fall and it's probably not going to be wrapped up with a nice neat bow this year.
next year we get a moderate tax package through from -- congress. david: we had an interview with kevin brady earlier today from the reagan library. gary cohn hed to talks about the group of six who are working on this tax reform package which includes people from the house, the senate and the administration including gary cohn and steve mnuchin. are you confident they can remain firmly fixated on getting the tax reform package put together through the house despite all of these distractions? >> i hope so. they put out their fundamental plan on july 27 and the plan was important for two reasons. it highlighted broad principles they want to keep congress focused on as they attempt to tax reform and those principles were lowering the individual rate, lowering the corporate tax rate. they wanted to make tax reform permanent, moves away from this bush era extenders
reauthorization every single year. parity forbring corporations and lower the rate for them. i think that will keep congress focused as we look at tax reform prospects. the other important thing to come out of that meeting was the fact that they announced that the border adjustment tax was largely dead. think politically that's important. it helps the chances of tax reform. for the simple fact that i have yet to meet a single person who seemed to be in favor of the border adjustment tax. the practicality of it is that it's a big hurdle for congress now because the estimate paid for was a trillion dollars over 10 years. that's going to be a difficult gap for them to make up. of six proposal was very broad and a lot of people were let down by the lack of detail. the only number in that proposal was the date on the page of
which it was released. many thanks, maggie gage. washingtons from today. more breaking news. another ceo has pulled out. says he hasof ge resigned from the president's counsel. but go check on the markets with abigail doolittle. .bigail: lots of uncertainty at this point we do have the major averages trading slightly higher. it is worth noting these three major averages are near session lows. after lots of headlines about the policy count most recently, president trump tweeting that he is ending both the manufacturing and the policy council even though we have ceos resigning from that counsel after the apparent ending.
some uncertainty. investors are reacting to some degree. the s&p 500 is near session lows. well off of the highs. that being said, the s&p 500 is just up and david kudlow said that this also shows that investors are disconnected from president trump's policies and politics more so just as they were after the colorful and controversial press conference yesterday. when we had that big selloff on to political tensions with north .orea that concerned investors look at gold. we have a bit of a haven did with gold trading near session highs. lots going on for the markets today. we have just heard that ge ceo jeff immelt has withdrawn from the presidential council. this is the one the president has said he already disbanded.
david: this is bloomberg markets: the trump economy. i'm david westin. the latest on president trump's decision to disband his advisory groups after a series of resignations. statement says, we believe the debate over foreign participation has become a distraction from our well-intentioned and sincere desire to aid vital policy discussions on how to improve the lives of everyday americans. that is steve schwarzman who has that counsel. margaret from washington. bloomberg broke the story the strategic counsel would be
shutting down. the president says we are going to disband both at the same time. the ceo of johnson & johnson, larry fink saying they are resigning. this is turning into something a little bit hard to follow. when you put it all together you can safely say that a major cross-section of american executives want to signal publicly that they are not comfortable with the way the president has handled this and has become too much of a political distraction. you're exactly right. the initial news that the strategic counsel was going to tell the white house it was disbanding followed quickly by the president saying, i am disbanding these followed by the people saying they would have pulled out if it wasn't disbanding, thing they would have pulled out anyway. you see the president trying to stop the coverage of this in the
way that it's being covered and get ahead of the narrative. see some executives wanting to distance themselves but not embarrass them president and others wanting to go on the record saying they want to distance themselves. none of this is the narrative the white house wanted. this is not the optics the president would have wanted. one of the things that strikes me is the swing. a lot of ceos were not that happy with president obama and his policies. this is a president who at least avowedly embraced the ceos and said i am one of you. i'm going to be good to business. these ceos one after the other went to the white house, got their pictures with him and talked to reporters about how wonderful this president is. this is a big swing for this president. >> it really is a juxtaposition.
with obama you had many business leaders who recognized the social icon role that president obama had but were concerned about his business policies. in this case executives always having been most interested in president trump's understanding of the american economy, willingness to do what they wanted on regulations and such. this is an important turning point. david: thank you for joining us again today. a quick reminder. you can catch all of our interviews on the bloomberg with the function tv . discuss on the program. live from new york and washington, this is bloomberg. ♪
scarlet: this is bloomberg markets. i'm scarlet fu. lots to cover including the federal reserve releasing minutes from its july meeting. wall street looking for clues around when the fed will unwind its balance sheet. julie: we are following news that president donald trump will disband advisory groups of business leaders after ceos quit this week following events in virginia. let's go to chris condon at the fed. the top take away from these fed minutes is that the fed is on track to hike again once more this year despite deepening concerns over low inflation. i will come back to that in a moment. the second thing the committee was actually quite close to for theng a start date balance sheet reduction plan and its meeting in july but they decided to hold off to an upcoming meeting. that will cement expectations in the market that the balance sheet program will be announced. the timing will be announced in september. the next interesting point