With Tweet about jobs numbers, Trump breaks yet another taboo

Adjust Comment Print

Roughly an hour before the employment data was released, President Donald Trump appeared to hint on Twitter that a strong jobs report was coming.

He'd put out a tweet one hour in advance of the official announcement, writing, "Looking forward to seeing the employment numbers at 8:30 this morning".

The unemployment rate in the US has fallen to its lowest in half a century, additionally shrinking the gap between black unemployment and white unemployment, the Labor Department reported Friday.

Former chairman for President Obama's Council of Economic Advisers Jason Furman disagreed.

"All employees of the executive branch who receive prerelease distribution of information and data estimates.are responsible for assuring that there is no release prior to the official release time", says the rule, which has been in effect since at least 1985.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note, which moves in the opposite direction of price, was at 2.885% at the time of Trump's tweet, The yield quickly moved up to 2.895% after the tweet, and climbed as high as 2.922 after the official release of the jobs report.

In fact, a strong jobs report often leads investors to sell equities and buy government debt because they will reap the benefits of higher interest rates.

Former officials from the Obama, Bush and Clinton administrations said Trump's tweet violated the directive. Friday's tweet, however, was the first time he's ever spoken about the job's report before it was released. A few hours later I'd have briefed President Obama.

Some legal experts believe that Trump, through this tweet, may have broken the protocol.

More news: Political, Kardashian West en route to White House
More news: England vs. Nigeria - Football Match Report
More news: French Open 2018: Serena Williams battles past Ashleigh Barty

"He chose to tweet, his tweet basically said like everybody else we await the job numbers. And if this tweet is conveying inside information about a particularly good jobs number you should never get them in advance from the Council of Economic Advisers again", he wrote on Twitter. However, given the headlines that swirled around financial markets Friday - including the US slapping tariffs on allies, and new developments in Italy's political crisis - Trump's tweet "didn't set off a firestorm of trading activity", Rupkey added.

Meanwhile, Kudlow said trade frictions between the United States and Canada are a "family quarrel", brushing aside concerns expressed by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as an overreaction.

At the same time, he said, a level playing field on trade could add more fuel to an economy already roaring in response to tax cuts and reductions in regulations.

Diane Swonk, chief economist at Grant Thornton, says the government takes extreme measures to keep this information closely held to try and protect it from any sort of politicization or the appearance that it has been tampered with.

The answer to this question is clearly that we can not be sure that this hasn't or wouldn't happen thanks to the fact that this President has already violated almost every other norm that applied in the past.

"I can tell you President Trump really cares about the economic data".

Modest wage growth remains the great puzzle in the economy.

Trump, like all presidents, got briefed on the jobs figures Thursday evening. "It's not the first norm he's breached; I think I've lost count of how many norms he's ignored or violated".