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Trump's Teasing Jobs Tweet Causes Stir on Wall Street

Rules prevent federal officials from commenting on economic data early
By Janet Cromley,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 1, 2018 5:16 PM CDT
President Donald Trump boards Air Force One on Thursday, May 31, 2018, in Dallas.   (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

(Newser) – President Trump’s 7:21am tweet hinting at favorable figures in Friday’s jobs report broke presidential protocol and may have run afoul of a federal rule on the subject, reports MarketWatch. "Looking forward to seeing the employment numbers at 8:30 this morning," wrote Trump. The Office of Management and Budget rule bars federal officials from commenting on sensitive economic data until one hour after its release, mainly because the comments can have a disruptive effect on the market. And indeed, after the tweet, the yield on the 10-year treasury note increased, then rose even more after the strong jobs report came out, notes the Wall Street Journal. Trump's tweet was quickly retweeted thousands of times, particularly in financial circles, reports Reuters.

The report is issued at 8:30am on the first Friday of the month, and the president is typically briefed the night before, notes the New York Times. Larry Kudlow, director of the White House National Economic Council, says he discussed the report with the president on Thursday and defended Trump’s tweet as being neutral. “His tweet basically said, like everybody else, we await the jobs numbers,” Kudlow told CNBC, per Reuters. “You can read into that 10 different things, if you want to read into it.” Lawrence Summers, who was Treasury chief under President Clinton, disagreed. If this had happened in either the Clinton or Obama White House, "it would have been a major scandal—with all sorts of investigations following on,” he tweeted. (Read more President Trump stories.)

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