Manufacturers, Wall Street getting Trump's ear in first 100 days

Thu Apr 27, 2017 1:25pm EDT
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By Jason Lange

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Manufacturers and Wall Street have led the quest for business access to President Donald Trump in his first 100 days in office, with media companies and Silicon Valley seldom entering the presidential bubble, a Reuters review found.

Since inauguration day on Jan. 20, top executives from at least 186 companies have visited with Trump or senior advisers at the White House or on presidential trips, including those to Mar-a-Lago, the private, seaside Florida club where he spends many weekends.

Some of the meetings have been reported in the press. But Reuters analyzed more than 900 White House press pool reports to give the first big picture view, albeit an incomplete one, of who has had the most and least success at bending the president's ear.

Such access can be crucial for companies, with Trump regularly passing judgment and making proposals on business issues such as trade, taxes, immigration and regulation.

The review showed Trump listening closely to some segments of Corporate America, though perhaps neglecting the dynamic technology and entertainment sectors, both powerful U.S. export industries.

Tim Cook, CEO of Apple Inc (AAPL.O: Quote), and other tech leaders met with Trump before his inauguration.

Access sometimes means influence, but it was likely too soon to tell, after less than 100 days, whether Trump's actions have disproportionately favored big manufacturers and Wall Street.

Industrial power-houses have led the way on access, including companies with the clout to make significant hiring decisions: Ford Motor Co (F.N: Quote) CEO Mark Fields has met with Trump at least four times; General Motors (GM.N: Quote) CEO Mary Barra, at least four times; and Boeing (BA.N: Quote) representatives, at least three times.   Continued...

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., April 27, 2017. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid