A number of corporate chieftains urged President Donald Trump to keep pushing his trade agenda around the world, according to former New York Stock Exchange president Tom Farley.
A group of the corporate leaders who dined with Trump last night told the president that the strength of the economy should give him the confidence to pursue trade disputes and not back down, according to Farley.
“There was actually a group at the meeting who said, ‘Things are going really well here. You have the tax cut. Unemployment down very, very low. Asset prices at all time highs. Mr. President now is the time to play tough on trade. Hold the line,'” Farley said in an interview on CNBC Wednesday afternoon.
He said the group urging the president to hold the line did not represent all those at the dinner.
“There wasn’t unanimity. But there was a group that was advocating that strategy,” Farley said.
Farley told CNBC that he had spoken with three of the chief executives at Tuesday’s dinner.
Farley went on to say that he expects Trump to reach a trade deal with Mexico before the midterm elections and possibly with the European Union.
“Likely not Canada. China will be the bogeyman. You’ll see China continue to struggle. And then the idea will be can we get a big trade deal prior to [Donald Trump’s] next election” in 2020, Farley said.