(ANTIMEDIA) The corporate world is scrambling to adjust to the impending Trump presidency, Reuters reported on Monday. The news agency spoke to bankers, executives, and employees of public relations firms who say the threat of being labeled “anti-American” by Trump must now be factored into all business decisions.
“Having seen some of America’s largest companies, including General Motors Co, Lockheed Martin Corp and United Technologies Corp, bluntly and publicly rebuked by Trump on Twitter,” Reuters writes, “many others are worried they may be his next target — especially if they have significant overseas manufacturing, have had U.S. job cuts or price increases for consumers.”
The news agency points out that Trump platformed on an “America First” ideology that focused heavily on job growth, and that because of the incoming president’s penchant for expressing his ire via social media, the corporate world is finding it has no choice but to adhere to a new rulebook. Reuters explains:
“That nationalistic rhetoric and Trump’s willingness to use his Twitter account as a cudgel has so rattled some companies that they are putting on hold mergers and acquisitions that may involve significant job cuts or moving production or tax domicile abroad, out of fear that such deals could be seen as ‘unpatriotic,’ several top Wall Street bankers said.”
Companies are starting to pay close attention to Trump’s tweets in order to develop what Reuters called “lines of attack” in case the president-elect should target them.
“Back in December the board was already asking questions,” said an unnamed executive at a large U.S. defense contractor. “What’s the plan in terms of what happens if he comes after us, are we ready? The board is asking us if we have a PR firm at the ready, if we have a person monitoring his Twitter.”
That executive said the plan is to “not get into a fight, and concede immediately” and that “the reality is that we’re trying to stay below the radar.”
Public relations advisors in both the government and private sectors are now being inundated by calls from concerned clients, says Kent Jarrell, a crisis and litigation expert at APCO Worldwide.
“The week after the election it was non-stop meetings and conference calls and analysis,” he said. “It’s almost like a whole new Trump practice is developing.”
It’s not merely about job creation in the U.S., however. Trump’s anti-China stance must be factored into corporate decisions as well, says James Park, chief executive of fitness device maker Fitbit Inc.
“Whether it’s taking higher costs into account or operationally preparing for moving manufacturing (out of China), companies are thinking about what to do,” said Park, who also stated businesses all over are developing Trump contingency plans.
One thing is certain. There’s a new order in the corporate world, and it’s coming about through no desire of the CEOs themselves — a sentiment aptly characterized by Reuters:
“Corporate leaders, say the advisors, can no longer focus only on maximizing shareholder value; they must now also weigh national interest.”
This article (Corporate America Shaken by Trump World Order As Tweets Send Stocks Crashing) is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to James Holbrooks and theAntiMedia.org. Anti-Media Radio airs weeknights at 11 pm Eastern/8 pm Pacific. Image credit: Gage Skidmore. If you spot a typo, please email the error and name of the article to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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