In the latest White House upheaval, President Trump’s chief economic advisor, Gary Cohn, is stepping down after failing to dissuade the president from plans to impose sweeping tariffs on imported metals.
Cohn’s resignation as director of the National Economic Council, a powerful agency with broad oversight over White House policy, suggests that Trump’s plans to levy 25% tariffs on steel and 10% on aluminum will be formalized shortly. That comes despite stern warnings from Cohn, congressional Republicans, businesses and foreign governments that such across-the-board tariffs could hurt the U.S. economy, drive up prices for American consumers and lead to a trade war.
As news of Cohn’s departure broke Tuesday evening, stock market futures plunged. Cohn, the former president of Goldman Sachs, is popular on Wall Street, where he has been seen as a restraining influence against Trump’s protectionist leanings. Cohn is expected to leave his post in the coming weeks.