The Business Roundtable’s quarterly index of CEO confidence last month hit its highest level since the survey began late in 2002. But the latest survey was conducted in February, before the Trump administration announced protectionist tariffs on steel and aluminum. The business lobbying group warned Tuesday that those tariffs could undermine the economic benefits and CEO optimism spurred by the GOP’s tax cuts and deregulation.
"By taking measures to restrict international trade, the Trump Administration risks undoing this economic progress and harming American workers and businesses who rely on trade to stay competitive in the global marketplace,” Business Roundtable President and CEO Joshua Bolten said in a statement. "Rather than undermining the benefits of tax reform and regulatory relief, the Administration should move forward with a positive trade agenda that expands opportunity for American businesses and workers."