3-7-18 8:43 AM EST | Email Article

U.S. equity futures were trading notably in the red Wednesday morning after White House chief economic adviser Gary Cohn resigned from his post.

What Happened

Cohn was favorably viewed by investors as being a "business-friendly" voice in the White House given his background as an ex-Goldman Sachs executive. His resignation isn't attributed to any one single factor, but does come at a time when he disagrees with President Donald Trump's tough talks on implementing large tariffs on steel and aluminium imports with zero exceptions given, The New York Times reported.

The timing of Cohn's departure is not yet known but is expected to be finalized in the coming weeks. Cohn, a free-trade-orientated Democrat, joins a handful of other senior members of Trump's team who have left their government post in recent months.

Why It's Important

"I think this is definitely a bigger deal than some of the other departures, due to Cohn's reputation as proponent of Wall Street," Dan Deming, managing director at KKM Financial told CNBC. "Short-term I believe it would increase concerns of an increased probability of a trade war escalating."

What's Next

According to Axios, potential candidates to replace Cohn include:

  • CNBC's senior contributor Larry Kudlow.
  • White House trade advisor Peter Navarro.
  • Cohn's top tax official Shahira Knight.
  • Former Fed governor and economic official under President George W. Bush's administration Kevin Warsh.

Related Links:

Gary Cohn Speaks Out Against Neo-Nazis: 'As A Patriotic American, I'm Reluctant To Leave My Post'

Cashin, Sonnenfeld Differ On The Dow's Tumble If Cohn Resigns

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