Mnuchin: No sign of recession on the horizon

Mnuchin: No sign of recession on the horizon
© Stefani Reynolds

Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven Terner MnuchinBudget talks between White House, Pelosi spill into weekend Conservative group raises concerns about potential budget deal How China's currency manipulation cheats America on trade MORE on Tuesday brushed off fears of an impending recession, saying the U.S. economy is on track for another year of strong growth.

Mnuchin said in a Fox Business Network interview Tuesday morning that he sees no sign of a U.S. slowdown despite rising fears of a global economic downturn within the next 12 to 24 months.

“We see no indications whatsoever of a recession on the horizon,” Mnuchin said Tuesday, arguing that the administration’s efforts to cut taxes, slash regulations and overhaul trade deals have “a very strong impact on the U.S. economy.”

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The U.S. economy is projected to slow slightly in 2019, slumping below the 3 percent annualized growth goal set by the Trump administration. Economists expect U.S. gross domestic product to grow at a rate close to 2.5 percent, but see it as being weighed down by fading fiscal stimulus and the mounting costs of trade disputes.

There’s also growing concern among policymakers and analysts that turmoil in emerging markets and a severe slump in China could drag down the U.S. economy.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) slightly cut its projections for growth in the U.S. and global economy, which IMF President Christine Lagarde attributed in part to the U.S.-China trade war.

Stocks also took steep losses Monday after Nvidia reported a sharp drop in demand from China.

Caterpillar, which traders see as a bellwether company, also fell short of its first quarter earnings goal.

The Trump administration has been bullish about the U.S. economy in 2019, claiming that the ratification of an updated North American trade pact and a new deal with China would reap benefits.

“China has a very large growing middle class. It's an enormous market. As I've said before, this is one of the biggest opportunities for U.S. companies and U.S. business if we can get this right,” Mnuchin said Tuesday.

Top officials from the U.S. and China will “discuss the trade relationship between the two countries” on Wednesday and Thursday in Washington, according to the White House.