Trump can spin economic numbers – but he likely can’t manipulate them, experts say

Experts and former top economic officials say that the economic data that underpins major government programs and forms the basis for private financial forecasts is likely safe from presidential interference. But, those with knowledge of the inner workings of the agencies and the White House economic advisory process say that any attempt to do so likely wouldn’t work. The White House did not respond to a request for comment. There are also procedural safeguards against the White House playing wi


Experts and former top economic officials say that the economic data that underpins major government programs and forms the basis for private financial forecasts is likely safe from presidential interference. But, those with knowledge of the inner workings of the agencies and the White House economic advisory process say that any attempt to do so likely wouldn’t work. The White House did not respond to a request for comment. There are also procedural safeguards against the White House playing wi
Trump can spin economic numbers – but he likely can’t manipulate them, experts say Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-09-10  Authors: tucker higgins
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, trump, economic, likely, manipulate, experts, agencies, house, numbers, report, data, work, say, spin, cant, president, white


Trump can spin economic numbers – but he likely can't manipulate them, experts say

US President Donald Trump speaks to the press before he departs for North Carolina on the South Lawn of the White House on September 9, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Chen Mengtong/China News Service/VCG via Getty Images) Chen Mengtong | Visual China Group | Getty Images

President Donald Trump can spin the numbers, but he can’t fudge them. Experts and former top economic officials say that the economic data that underpins major government programs and forms the basis for private financial forecasts is likely safe from presidential interference. Questions about the integrity of government data arose following a report in The New York Times on Monday that said Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross threatened to fire senior officials at a federal scientific agency his department oversees after the agency contradicted the president’s claims about Hurricane Dorian. In the wake of that report, some former officials worried that it could suggest a willingness on the part of the Trump administration to intervene in other independent federal agencies, such as those that maintain the nation’s economic data. The Bureau of Economic Analysis, for example, produces quarterly reports on the nation’s gross domestic product, a data point Trump has touted as a metric of his performance as president and a credential for his 2020 reelection bid. But, those with knowledge of the inner workings of the agencies and the White House economic advisory process say that any attempt to do so likely wouldn’t work. In short, the people who work at those agencies likely wouldn’t put up with any kind of data manipulation. “Let me put it this way — if they tried to do anything with the data, I think they would get caught,” said Dean Baker, a senior economist at the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington. In a statement, a Commerce Department spokesperson said the report in the Times was “false.” The White House did not respond to a request for comment.

Long tradition of independence

The main thing standing in the way of political interference in the work of the government’s statistical agencies is the long tradition of independence at the bureaus, according to Katharine Abraham, a former commissioner of the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The BLS, which is under the Labor Department, and the BEA and Census Bureau, which are both under the Commerce Department, produce the major government statistics. “There is, at all of these agencies, a culture of extreme independence,” Abraham said. “In all of these places, people talk to reporters.” There are also procedural safeguards against the White House playing with the numbers, she said. No one outside of the BLS — and even most of those inside the agency — sees the most politically fraught figures, such as jobs data, until the commissioner and a relatively small group of career officials have written the accompanying press release. The White House receives the numbers, with the release, the night before the public.

In all of these places, people talk to reporters. Katharine Abraham former BLS commissioner

“There are a lot of things that I worry about under this current administration. There are a lot of terrible things this administration has done. But I have never had any doubt that any of the economic data from BLS or BEA is legitimate,” said Jacob Leibenluft, a former deputy director of the National Economic Council under President Barack Obama, and the head of Hillary Clinton’s 2016 economic policy team during the general election campaign. “I have high confidence that if there was political pressure put on those agencies to juice the stats, that we would hear about it,” Leibenluft said. On top of the procedural barriers, it would require a great deal of coordinated, specialized work to swap in new numbers without people immediately noticing, experts said. Baker, the CEPR economist, pointed out that in some of the surveys, the underlying data behind the top-level numbers are released to the public. “You’ve collected this survey from 60,000 households, and if you didn’t have someone go in and change at least a substantial portion of them, people would catch it,” Baker said. He added that it would take a well-coordinated “large-scale conspiracy” to pull it off. “You would have to have a lot of people in on it,” he said. “And they would have to know what they were doing.” The last president known to attempt to interfere in the work of the Bureau of Labor Statistics was Richard Nixon, who ordered an aide to tally the number of Jews and Democrats who worked at the agency, then had a number of them removed from their posts. Nixon’s efforts were documented in the 1976 book “The Final Days” by Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein.

Eyes on final jobs report before 2020 election


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-09-10  Authors: tucker higgins
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, trump, economic, likely, manipulate, experts, agencies, house, numbers, report, data, work, say, spin, cant, president, white


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What Bolton’s exit means for the oil market

The exit of National Security Advisor John Bolton from the White House makes it less likely the situation between the U.S. and Iran will escalate to a military conflict, analysts said. Oil prices traded lower after President Donald Trump tweeted Tuesday that he asked Bolton to resign. The White House said there were several reasons for Bolton’s departure and said it was not due tot he recent leaks about disagreement within the administration about a failed idea to hold talks with the Taliban at


The exit of National Security Advisor John Bolton from the White House makes it less likely the situation between the U.S. and Iran will escalate to a military conflict, analysts said. Oil prices traded lower after President Donald Trump tweeted Tuesday that he asked Bolton to resign. The White House said there were several reasons for Bolton’s departure and said it was not due tot he recent leaks about disagreement within the administration about a failed idea to hold talks with the Taliban at
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Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-09-10  Authors: patti domm
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, deal, market, exit, trump, proposal, president, boltons, house, nuclear, white, sanctions, oil, means, bolton, iran


What Bolton's exit means for the oil market

The exit of National Security Advisor John Bolton from the White House makes it less likely the situation between the U.S. and Iran will escalate to a military conflict, analysts said.

Oil prices traded lower after President Donald Trump tweeted Tuesday that he asked Bolton to resign. Seen as the most hawkish member of the president’s cabinet, Bolton told NBC News that he was resigning on his own volition and that Trump had not asked him to leave. The White House said there were several reasons for Bolton’s departure and said it was not due tot he recent leaks about disagreement within the administration about a failed idea to hold talks with the Taliban at Camp David.

“This dials back fears of an attack on Iran,” said John Kilduff, partner of Again Capital. “His desire to attack Iran goes back to George W. Bush. The oil market was always on tenter hooks with him on the scene.”

Trump last year withdrew the U.S. from a nuclear deal between Iran, the U.S. and five other countries that removed sanctions from the country in return for its commitment to end its nuclear. Trump had said the agreement was one sided and too short term. both the president and Bolton had said the deal would still allow Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon.

The White House resumed sanctions on Iran, and has succeeded in forcing most of its oil exports off the market. Other members of the agreement have tried to keep Iran in the deal and France most recently offered to provide a credit line to Iran of $15 billion if it would end its uranium enrichment and recommit to the nuclear deal. Under that proposal, Iran would be allowed to resume export of 700,000 barrels a day of oil.

“Obviously, this increases the likelihood that Macron’s proposal will be accepted and the $15 billion credit line backed by 700,000 barrels a day is accepted,” noted Helima Croft, head of global commodities research at RBC. She said she does not see the proposal gaining acceptance as her base case, but a deal is certainly more “likely than it was yesterday.”

Bolton had opposed the deal, suggested by French President Emanuel Macron, as had Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Just Monday, Netanyahu reported a recent finding by Israel of a secret Iranian nuclear facility, which he said Iran destroyed this past summer.

Since sanctions began to squeeze Iran, tensions in the Gulf have increased, with Iranian proxies in Yemen sending missiles and armed drones into Saudi Arabia. Iran has also seized a U.K. tanker in the Strait of Hormuz and allegedly mined several others in the Gulf.

Iran also downed a U.S. drone fired a drone at a U.S. in June, which nearly triggered U.S. military action.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-09-10  Authors: patti domm
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, deal, market, exit, trump, proposal, president, boltons, house, nuclear, white, sanctions, oil, means, bolton, iran


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Gary Cohn gave Mick Mulvaney golf course passes worth $2,500, months after he left the White House

After Gary Cohn left President Donald Trump’s administration early last year he quietly helped Mick Mulvaney, another top Trump aide, gain access to a couple of golf tournaments. Mulvaney was Cohn’s guest at two separate golf tournaments, according to Mulvaney’s financial disclosure report. Mulvaney is acting White House chief of staff; at that time he was only director of Trump’s Office of Budget and Management. Some estimates show Trump’s golf trips have cost taxpayers more than $100 million.


After Gary Cohn left President Donald Trump’s administration early last year he quietly helped Mick Mulvaney, another top Trump aide, gain access to a couple of golf tournaments. Mulvaney was Cohn’s guest at two separate golf tournaments, according to Mulvaney’s financial disclosure report. Mulvaney is acting White House chief of staff; at that time he was only director of Trump’s Office of Budget and Management. Some estimates show Trump’s golf trips have cost taxpayers more than $100 million.
Gary Cohn gave Mick Mulvaney golf course passes worth $2,500, months after he left the White House Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-09-06  Authors: brian schwartz
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, cohns, passes, gave, house, trump, left, guest, mick, trumps, tournaments, office, president, cohn, golf, mulvaney, months, worth, white


Gary Cohn gave Mick Mulvaney golf course passes worth $2,500, months after he left the White House

Gary Cohn, then-chief economic advisor to the president (right) chats with Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney in the Indian Treaty Room of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on October 17, 2017 in Washington, DC.

After Gary Cohn left President Donald Trump’s administration early last year he quietly helped Mick Mulvaney, another top Trump aide, gain access to a couple of golf tournaments.

Cohn resigned as Trump’s top economic advisor in March 2018. Mulvaney was Cohn’s guest at two separate golf tournaments, according to Mulvaney’s financial disclosure report. The guest passes were valued at $2,500. Mulvaney is acting White House chief of staff; at that time he was only director of Trump’s Office of Budget and Management.

The newly released document, which was approved by the Office of Government Ethics last month, says that the tickets were considered gifts and described as “two golf member guest tournament entry fees.” The disclosure form notes the tournaments took place in June and October of 2018. In both instances, Mulvaney stayed at Cohn’s home in New York, according to people with direct knowledge of the matter. The filing shows that Mulvaney paid for his own travel.

The October golf game was for charity at The Gust Hamptons Invitational at the Atlantic Golf Club in Bridgehampton, New York, these people added. The tournament’s website says it took place Oct. 11 and 12. The event in June was a standard tournament involving Cohn, Mulvaney and other associates, but these sources would not say whether it took place at the same golf course. Cohn is a former president of Goldman Sachs.

Revelations about Mulvaney’s guest passes come as Trump himself regularly hits the links at his own resorts. Over Labor Day weekend, the president was spotted at the Trump National Golf Club in Virginia. Trump has golfed more than 200 times since his inauguration with most of those outings at his signature courses. Some estimates show Trump’s golf trips have cost taxpayers more than $100 million.

Mulvaney became interim White House chief of staff two months after the last recorded golf outing with Cohn. The two have remained close friends ever since Cohn’s resignation.

The New York Post reported in June that the pair were spotted at the Atlantic Golf Club, and that Mulvaney was Cohn’s guest. In 2016, Mulvaney was ranked as one of Washington, D.C.’s top 150 golfers, according to Golf Digest.

A spokesman for OMB referred questions about Mulvaney’s golf tournaments with Cohn to the White House, which did not return a request for comment. A spokeswoman for Cohn declined to comment.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-09-06  Authors: brian schwartz
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, cohns, passes, gave, house, trump, left, guest, mick, trumps, tournaments, office, president, cohn, golf, mulvaney, months, worth, white


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The official in charge of Trump’s Middle East peace plan is leaving the White House

Jason Greenblatt, the official in charge of President Donald Trump’s Middle East peace plan, is departing the White House, Trump announced Thursday. “After almost 3 years in my Administration, Jason Greenblatt will be leaving to pursue work in the private sector. Greenblatt became the president’s special representative for international negotiations in 2017, and worked closely with White House senior advisor Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law. The peace plan that Greenblatt has overseen h


Jason Greenblatt, the official in charge of President Donald Trump’s Middle East peace plan, is departing the White House, Trump announced Thursday. “After almost 3 years in my Administration, Jason Greenblatt will be leaving to pursue work in the private sector. Greenblatt became the president’s special representative for international negotiations in 2017, and worked closely with White House senior advisor Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law. The peace plan that Greenblatt has overseen h
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Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-09-05  Authors: tucker higgins
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, presidents, greenblatt, president, peace, east, official, charge, middle, leaving, trump, kushner, released, plan, white, trumps, jason, house


The official in charge of Trump's Middle East peace plan is leaving the White House

Jason Greenblatt, the official in charge of President Donald Trump’s Middle East peace plan, is departing the White House, Trump announced Thursday.

“After almost 3 years in my Administration, Jason Greenblatt will be leaving to pursue work in the private sector. Jason has been a loyal and great friend and fantastic lawyer,” Trump wrote in a series of posts on Twitter.

“His dedication to Israel and to seeking peace between Israel and the Palestinians won’t be forgotten,” Trump wrote. “He will be missed. Thank you Jason!”

The departure of one of the few senior officials with responsibility for overseeing the president’s foreign policy ambitions in the Middle East raises questions about the progress of the plan, which has yet to be fully disclosed, to achieve an elusive Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement.

News of Greenblatt’s departure was earlier reported by NBC News and other outlets. In a statement, Greenblatt said he was “grateful to have been part of the team that drafted a realistic vision for peace, which has the potential to improve the lives of millions of Israelis, Palestinians and others in the region.”

Greenblatt became the president’s special representative for international negotiations in 2017, and worked closely with White House senior advisor Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law.

“Jason has done a tremendous job leading the efforts to develop an economic and political vision for a long sought after peace in the Middle East,” Kushner said in a statement. “His work has helped develop the relationships between Israel and its neighbors as he is trusted and respected by all of the leaders throughout the region.”

The peace plan that Greenblatt has overseen has yet to be fully unveiled. In June, the administration released the economic portion of the plan during a two-day conference in Bahrain. That effort was boycotted by Palestinian leadership with the support of most Palestinians.

The political aspect of the plan remains under wraps and has suffered from a number of delays. It is not expected to be released before the Sept. 17 Israeli election, which will determine whether Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, a close ally of the president, remains in office.

An official told The New York Times on Thursday that the plan “will be released when appropriate.”

The president did not specify when Greenblatt will officially leave his post.

Before joining the Trump administration, Greenblatt was a private lawyer for the Trump Organization. Avi Berkowitz, a deputy assistant to the president and a Kushner ally, will take Greenblatt’s role, NBC News reported.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-09-05  Authors: tucker higgins
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, presidents, greenblatt, president, peace, east, official, charge, middle, leaving, trump, kushner, released, plan, white, trumps, jason, house


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GM CEO Mary Barra’s meeting with Trump comes at a pivotal time for automaker

Nicolas Kamm | AFP | Getty ImagesA Thursday meeting between President Donald Trump and General Motors CEO and Chairman Mary Barra at the White House comes at a critical time for the automaker’s business operations and automotive industry. Expected attendees include Barra, Trump, members of GM’s policy team and Trump’s top economic advisor Larry Kudlow, according to a White House official and a person briefed on the meeting. GM declined to disclose specifics of the private meeting, citing “execut


Nicolas Kamm | AFP | Getty ImagesA Thursday meeting between President Donald Trump and General Motors CEO and Chairman Mary Barra at the White House comes at a critical time for the automaker’s business operations and automotive industry. Expected attendees include Barra, Trump, members of GM’s policy team and Trump’s top economic advisor Larry Kudlow, according to a White House official and a person briefed on the meeting. GM declined to disclose specifics of the private meeting, citing “execut
GM CEO Mary Barra’s meeting with Trump comes at a pivotal time for automaker Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-09-05  Authors: michael wayland
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, pivotal, automakers, automaker, rules, president, meeting, mary, ceo, comes, executives, trump, ford, barras, white, house


GM CEO Mary Barra's meeting with Trump comes at a pivotal time for automaker

President Donald Trump delivers remarks at American Center for Mobility in Ypsilanti, Michigan with General Motors CEO Mary Barra and other auto industry executives on March 15, 2017. Nicolas Kamm | AFP | Getty Images

A Thursday meeting between President Donald Trump and General Motors CEO and Chairman Mary Barra at the White House comes at a critical time for the automaker’s business operations and automotive industry. In addition to facing ongoing concerns regarding trade, China and national fuel economy regulations, the Detroit carmaker was selected Tuesday as the lead company over Ford Motor and Fiat Chrysler to negotiate new labor contracts with the United Auto Workers union. All four of those topics are expected to be among the “wide ranging” discussions during the 1:45 p.m. meeting in the Oval Office, according to two people briefed on the meeting. Expected attendees include Barra, Trump, members of GM’s policy team and Trump’s top economic advisor Larry Kudlow, according to a White House official and a person briefed on the meeting. GM declined to disclose specifics of the private meeting, citing “executives meet with policy makers on a regular basis.” The White House confirmed the sit-down after Reuters reported the meeting Wednesday night. “We had a productive and valuable meeting,” Barra told reporters after exiting the White House. Since Trump was elected to office in 2016, GM and other automakers have routinely briefed him and his administration on their operations — everything from policies to major investment announcements.

Fine line

Automakers, specifically GM, have walked a fine line when it comes to briefing the president. He’s often criticized or commended automakers’ decisions on Twitter — sometimes even before the companies have a chance to announce their own news. Less than a week ago, Trump attacked GM for its production facilities in China and questioned whether the automaker should move the operations to the U.S. Trump, in a tweet, said GM, “once the Giant of Detroit, is now one of the smallest auto manufacturers there. They moved major plants to China, BEFORE I CAME INTO OFFICE. This was done despite the saving help given them by the USA. Now they should start moving back to America again?” Many of the claims in the tweet against the Detroit automaker were misleading or inaccurate, according to industry data and officials. It came a day after Bloomberg News reported GM’s 46,000 unionized workforce in the U.S. trails Ford by about 9,000 and Fiat Chrysler by roughly 1,200.

California

Trump last month also called out the automakers, specifically Ford, for not supporting his efforts to roll back Obama-era fuel efficiency rules for new vehicles. He called auto executives “foolish,” said the founders of Ford and GM are “rolling over” at the “weakness of current car company executives.” The attacks came after Ford, Honda, BMW and Volkswagen reached a voluntary agreement last month with California on fuel economy standards. The deal incorporated more stringent emissions rules adopted by former President Barack Obama that Trump is intent on easing. While many automakers have supported reevaluating the rules to address current market conditions of lower gas prices, all-electric vehicles and increased sales of trucks and SUVs, none of the major automakers support Trump’s plan to roll back Obama-era standards. The administration, in the meantime, is preparing a plan to do just that. Two U.S. agencies are writing new rules that would revoke California’s authority to set its own emissions standards and preempt states from setting their own vehicle rules, Reuters reported Thursday, citing two people briefed on the matter.

Labor union talks


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-09-05  Authors: michael wayland
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, pivotal, automakers, automaker, rules, president, meeting, mary, ceo, comes, executives, trump, ford, barras, white, house


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Trump was so angry after China’s trade retaliation that he wanted to double tariffs

President Donald Trump awaits the arrival of Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani at the White House in Washington, July 9, 2019. President Donald Trump wanted to double tariff rates on Chinese goods last month after Beijing’s latest retaliation in a boiling trade war before settling on a smaller increase, three sources told CNBC. His initial reaction, communicated to aides on a White House trade call held that day, was to suggest doubling existing tariffs, according to three people brie


President Donald Trump awaits the arrival of Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani at the White House in Washington, July 9, 2019. President Donald Trump wanted to double tariff rates on Chinese goods last month after Beijing’s latest retaliation in a boiling trade war before settling on a smaller increase, three sources told CNBC. His initial reaction, communicated to aides on a White House trade call held that day, was to suggest doubling existing tariffs, according to three people brie
Trump was so angry after China’s trade retaliation that he wanted to double tariffs Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-09-03  Authors: kayla tausche jacob pramuk, kayla tausche, jacob pramuk
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, tariffs, house, trade, rates, secretary, retaliation, washington, tariff, wanted, chinas, president, double, angry, trump, white


Trump was so angry after China's trade retaliation that he wanted to double tariffs

President Donald Trump awaits the arrival of Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani at the White House in Washington, July 9, 2019.

President Donald Trump wanted to double tariff rates on Chinese goods last month after Beijing’s latest retaliation in a boiling trade war before settling on a smaller increase, three sources told CNBC.

The president was outraged after he learned Aug. 23 that China had formalized plans to slap duties on $75 billion in U.S. products in response to new tariffs from Washington on Sept. 1. His initial reaction, communicated to aides on a White House trade call held that day, was to suggest doubling existing tariffs, according to three people briefed on the matter.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer then enlisted multiple CEOs to call the president and warn him about the impact such a move would have on the stock market and the economy.

He settled on a 5% hike in tariff rates on about $550 billion in Chinese products, which he announced in an Aug. 23 tweet after the market close.

In the following days, both Mnuchin and White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said Trump’s only regret was not raising tariffs higher.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-09-03  Authors: kayla tausche jacob pramuk, kayla tausche, jacob pramuk
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, tariffs, house, trade, rates, secretary, retaliation, washington, tariff, wanted, chinas, president, double, angry, trump, white


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Many minorities avoid seeking credit due to generations of discrimination. Why that keeps them back

Long’s credit score remains far lower than the average FICO score of 695. Ricki Lowitz, chief executive officer at Working Credit, a Chicago-based nonprofit that helps clients in seven states navigate the credit system, believes that the way to assist disenfranchised consumers is to first help them overcome “their deep seated fear of credit.” When her clients learn how the credit system works, many are angry that they did not have the information earlier, she says. The median credit score for pa


Long’s credit score remains far lower than the average FICO score of 695. Ricki Lowitz, chief executive officer at Working Credit, a Chicago-based nonprofit that helps clients in seven states navigate the credit system, believes that the way to assist disenfranchised consumers is to first help them overcome “their deep seated fear of credit.” When her clients learn how the credit system works, many are angry that they did not have the information earlier, she says. The median credit score for pa
Many minorities avoid seeking credit due to generations of discrimination. Why that keeps them back Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-09-01  Authors: lori teresa yearwood
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, seeking, generations, minorities, score, long, color, white, discrimination, rates, keeps, working, fenelon, avoid, mother, system, credit


Many minorities avoid seeking credit due to generations of discrimination. Why that keeps them back

Image Source | DigitalVision | Getty Images

For many minorities in America, it’s an all too familiar scene. An applicant who is a person of color and and applies for credit is either denied or gets much worse terms than a white borrower. In fact, an investigation by the National Fair Housing Alliance, a Washington D.C.-based nonprofit, found that 60% of the time, applicants who were people of color — and way more financially qualified than their white counterparts —nevertheless were offered higher-priced car loans, costing them an extra $2,662 each over the course of the loan. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) joined forces in May to introduce the Loan Shark Prevention Act to “combat the predatory lending practices of America’s big banks and protect consumers already burdened with exorbitant credit-card interest rates.” The legislation would cap interest rates at 15%, likely benefiting many consumers of color. More from Personal Finance:

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3 retirement essentials to keep more cash in your pocket Whether these actions can repair the financial damage that minorities have long endured in America remains to be seen. Decades of discrimination by the federal government and America’s financial institutions has induced an almost trauma-like response, causing many people of color, particularly African-Americans, to adopt self-protective behavior not unlike a post-traumatic stress reaction. The paradox: This defensive behavior, where the cause of injury is avoided, often distances people of color from the very credit-granting institutions they need to thrive. The ramifications of that can prove devastating, as good credit impacts everything from mortgage rates to hiring decisions by employers.

Scarred at an early age

Consider the plight of Sherry Long, 68, who witnessed racism firsthand when she was just 10, an experience that continues to impact her financial well-being. On a hot summer day in 1959, Long and her mother walked the 2.5 miles from their log cabin to the Rawlins, Wyoming, municipal building twice in one day, the second time to ask why the city had turned off their water. On their first visit, they had paid their water bill in cash. “I just gave you $300,” Long’s mother, an African-American, told the city worker, a white woman. “You didn’t give me any money,” Long said the clerk replied.

Sherry Long avoided seeking credit due to racial childhood trauma. Lori Teresa Yearwood

Long’s mother, a nurse’s aide and house cleaner who lived paycheck to paycheck, pleaded with her employers for emergency loans and then worked overtime to pay off the debts. On that day, Long made a vow to herself: She would avoid the white, mainstream institutions that reminded her of the one that stole from her mother. A soft-spoken woman, Long chokes back tears as she recounts how she hoped that by this time in her life, after earning her bachelor’s degree in psychology and working for nearly 30 years in the non-profit sector, she would own a house and have good credit. Instead, after paying annual interest rates of up to 700% on emergency payday loans to cover her rent and basic living costs, she fell behind and got evicted from her two-bedroom apartment in an upscale Salt Lake City neighborhood. After couch-surfing with friends for more than a year, she now rents a one-bedroom apartment above a busy restaurant, across the street from a massage parlor in a high-crime area. Long’s credit score remains far lower than the average FICO score of 695.

She says she never considered seeking help from a white-owned institution. “They just didn’t seem like they were meant for people like us,” Long said.

Defensive crouch

Jacqueline Scott, an associate professor of philosophy who specializes in race theory at Chicago’s Loyola University, understands that traumatized people go into a “kind of defensive crouch.” In fact, this PTSD-like response is so prevalent that Scott has coined a term to help her students understand it: “meta oppression.” “It’s the depression that comes from having already dealt with oppression for an extended period of time,” Scott explained. Ricki Lowitz, chief executive officer at Working Credit, a Chicago-based nonprofit that helps clients in seven states navigate the credit system, believes that the way to assist disenfranchised consumers is to first help them overcome “their deep seated fear of credit.” Nearly 80% of Working Credit’s clients are people of color.

We meet people who have been beaten down by the system. Ricki Lowitz chief executive officer at Working Credit

There is longstanding debate over whether the algorithms that drive the credit scoring system are racially biased. Joanne Gaskin, vice president of scores and analytics at credit-scoring company FICO, says the firm doesn’t use age, address, employment, income, gender or race in generating their scores. “The fact that race is not factored into the credit score is perhaps the greatest opportunity we have to help people of color level the playing field,” Lowitz said. When her clients learn how the credit system works, many are angry that they did not have the information earlier, she says. “We meet people who have been beaten down by the system,” Lowitz said. “In some cases, we are contradicting their parents and grandparents who have told them to stay away.” The median credit score for participants in Working Credit’s 18-month program increased by 45 points for Hispanic participants and by 44 points for African Americans.

Cleaning up his credit history

Stanley Fenelon, of Boston, is one graduate of the program. In 2016, the 26-year-old African-American had spent about a year sleeping in his car while working at a paid internship.

Stanley Fenelon is a business analyst at Harvard University. Rose Lincoln | Harvard University

After overcoming that struggle and finding a job, Fenelon faced another challenge: cleaning up his credit history. His low scores disqualified him from affordable car loans and safe apartment rentals that he needed to stabilize his life. “As with just about any African-American or minority I know, my parents didn’t know about credit,” he said. “I was taught to take great caution with it, everyone had so much fear.” Instead of seeking credit, Fenelon’s family repeatedly urged him to be “independent.”

Then you turn around and beat them at their own game Stanley Fenelon

As a result, Fenelon eventually found himself with little in savings or access to credit, contributing to his plunge into homelessness. Even when he managed to land a job as a business analyst at Harvard University, Fenelon said he was passed over numerous times for apartment rentals by landlords looking for “more qualified applicants.” Confounded, he enrolled in a Working Credit workshop, where he learned to negotiate with creditors, strategically pay off his debts and assuage his fear of banks.

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Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-09-01  Authors: lori teresa yearwood
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, seeking, generations, minorities, score, long, color, white, discrimination, rates, keeps, working, fenelon, avoid, mother, system, credit


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China claims fentanyl progress in trade call, sources say

It’s unclear whether President viewed the evidence China provided – which could not be learned by CNBC – as sufficient progress. As he departed the White House for Camp David on Friday evening, he told reporters the next round of tariffs is still on. Fentanyl has been a high priority for the White House as it moves to combat the opioid crisis. At a bilateral dinner, President Xi Jinping committed to reclassifying fentanyl and related drugs as “controlled substances,” and subjecting anyone caught


It’s unclear whether President viewed the evidence China provided – which could not be learned by CNBC – as sufficient progress. As he departed the White House for Camp David on Friday evening, he told reporters the next round of tariffs is still on. Fentanyl has been a high priority for the White House as it moves to combat the opioid crisis. At a bilateral dinner, President Xi Jinping committed to reclassifying fentanyl and related drugs as “controlled substances,” and subjecting anyone caught
China claims fentanyl progress in trade call, sources say Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-08-30  Authors: kayla tausche
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, tariffs, drugs, progress, trump, claims, sources, fentanyl, trade, house, china, say, unclear, president, white


China claims fentanyl progress in trade call, sources say

U.S. and Chinese officials held a “working-level” call Thursday evening in which Beijing said it was making progress in restricting outbound fentanyl shipments, according to three sources familiar with the matter, homing in on a personal policy focus of President Donald Trump as it tries to get the White House to rollback tariffs.

In the call, these sources said, Chinese officials again reiterated a desire for relief on tariffs, with 15% tariffs set to hit $112 billion goods on Sunday, and existing tariffs to rise on an additional $250 billion in goods a month later.

It’s unclear whether President viewed the evidence China provided – which could not be learned by CNBC – as sufficient progress. As he departed the White House for Camp David on Friday evening, he told reporters the next round of tariffs is still on.

It’s unclear whether the level of detail provided by China on halting fentanyl exports would be enough to get President Trump to roll back the tariffs that, according to aides, he believes are his most effective policy tool.

Fentanyl has been a high priority for the White House as it moves to combat the opioid crisis.

Stopping shipment of the drug from China to the U.S. was a focal point of conversation for the two leaders when they met at the G-20 in Buenos Aires in late 2018.

At a bilateral dinner, President Xi Jinping committed to reclassifying fentanyl and related drugs as “controlled substances,” and subjecting anyone caught making or selling the drugs to maximum penalty.

Trump has accused Xi of not doing enough since then to stop the flow of illicit drugs to the US.

In a briefing this week, China’s Foreign Ministry said it’s “groundless and false” that China is the main source of fentanyl in the U.S., and that the U.S. isn’t doing enough to stem demand for the drug among domestic users.

“With 5% of the world’s total population, the U.S. consumes 80% of the global opioid medication,” spokesperson Geng Shuang told reporters on Aug. 29. “If the US really wants to solve its fentanyl problem, it should put its own house in order.”

The White House did not respond to a request for comment.

The U.S. Trade Representative and the Treasury Department declined to comment.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-08-30  Authors: kayla tausche
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, tariffs, drugs, progress, trump, claims, sources, fentanyl, trade, house, china, say, unclear, president, white


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Trump attacks General Motors over China, US employment

President Donald Trump, left, listens during a Strategic and Policy Forum meeting with business leaders and White House advisors in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Friday, Feb. 3, 2017. DETROIT – President Donald Trump on Friday attacked General Motors for its significant presence in China and questioned whether the automaker should move the operations to the U.S.Trump, in a tweet, said GM, “once the Giant of Detroit, is now one of the smallest auto manufac


President Donald Trump, left, listens during a Strategic and Policy Forum meeting with business leaders and White House advisors in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Friday, Feb. 3, 2017. DETROIT – President Donald Trump on Friday attacked General Motors for its significant presence in China and questioned whether the automaker should move the operations to the U.S.Trump, in a tweet, said GM, “once the Giant of Detroit, is now one of the smallest auto manufac
Trump attacks General Motors over China, US employment Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-08-30  Authors: michael wayland
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, gm, house, attacks, white, motors, president, trump, employment, ford, workers, china, automaker, general, fiat


Trump attacks General Motors over China, US employment

President Donald Trump, left, listens during a Strategic and Policy Forum meeting with business leaders and White House advisors in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Friday, Feb. 3, 2017.

DETROIT – President Donald Trump on Friday attacked General Motors for its significant presence in China and questioned whether the automaker should move the operations to the U.S.

Trump, in a tweet, said GM, “once the Giant of Detroit, is now one of the smallest auto manufacturers there. They moved major plants to China, BEFORE I CAME INTO OFFICE. This was done despite the saving help given them by the USA. Now they should start moving back to America again?”

Many of the claims in the tweet against the Detroit automaker were misleading or inaccurate, according to industry data and officials.

GM remains the largest automaker in the U.S. by sales, however it has been surpassed by crosstown rivals Ford Motor and Fiat Chrysler in the number of union-represented American workers it employs. Overall, GM says it employs nearly 100,000 people in the U.S. at 132 locations in 27 states.

GM declined to comment directly on the tweet, which comes a day after Bloomberg News reported GM’s 46,000 UAW workers trails Ford by about 9,000 and Fiat Chrysler by roughly 1,200.

The tweet also comes a week after China announced it would reimpose a 25% tariff later this year on American vehicles entering the country as part of the ongoing trade war with the U.S.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-08-30  Authors: michael wayland
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, gm, house, attacks, white, motors, president, trump, employment, ford, workers, china, automaker, general, fiat


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Trump says the US wasn’t involved in apparent launch pad explosion in Iran

President Donald Trump speaks to the media before departing the White House en route West Virginia in Washington, July 24, 2019. VIENNA — President Donald Trump on Friday insisted that the U.S. had nothing to do with the apparent launch pad explosion of an Iranian rocket. Trump’s denial also included what looked to be an aerial photograph of the launch site, complete with graphics and annotations describing the scene. “The United States of America was not involved in the catastrophic accident du


President Donald Trump speaks to the media before departing the White House en route West Virginia in Washington, July 24, 2019. VIENNA — President Donald Trump on Friday insisted that the U.S. had nothing to do with the apparent launch pad explosion of an Iranian rocket. Trump’s denial also included what looked to be an aerial photograph of the launch site, complete with graphics and annotations describing the scene. “The United States of America was not involved in the catastrophic accident du
Trump says the US wasn’t involved in apparent launch pad explosion in Iran Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-08-30  Authors: amanda macias kevin breuninger, amanda macias, kevin breuninger
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, wasnt, white, told, explosion, iran, house, launch, president, involved, included, apparent, trump, site, pad


Trump says the US wasn't involved in apparent launch pad explosion in Iran

President Donald Trump speaks to the media before departing the White House en route West Virginia in Washington, July 24, 2019.

VIENNA — President Donald Trump on Friday insisted that the U.S. had nothing to do with the apparent launch pad explosion of an Iranian rocket.

Trump’s denial also included what looked to be an aerial photograph of the launch site, complete with graphics and annotations describing the scene.

A U.S. defense official told CNBC that the picture in Trump’s tweet, which appeared to be a snapshot of a physical copy of the satellite image, was included in a Friday intelligence briefing.

Experts told CNBC that the shot was likely never meant for public view.

“The United States of America was not involved in the catastrophic accident during final launch preparations for the Safir SLV Launch at Semnan Launch Site One in Iran,” Trump said in a tweet Friday afternoon.

“I wish Iran best wishes and good luck in determining what happened at Site One,” he added.

Speaking to reporters before departing the White House Friday, Trump said he had the right to release the photo.

Trump’s comments on Twitter came on the heels of what appeared to be a failed rocket launch at a space center in northern Iran a day earlier.

It wasn’t clear whom the president was responding to, or whether the U.S. had otherwise been accused of having a hand in the seeming blow-up at the launch site. Neither the White House nor the Pentagon immediately provided a response to CNBC’s inquiries.

“I think it is extremely unlikely that the U.S. had anything to do with the explosion. And it’s a monumentally bad idea to hint that we might have,” said Jeffrey Lewis, a nuclear weapons expert at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-08-30  Authors: amanda macias kevin breuninger, amanda macias, kevin breuninger
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, wasnt, white, told, explosion, iran, house, launch, president, involved, included, apparent, trump, site, pad


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