Trump’s jobs tweet might have broken federal rules

Nancy Marshall-Genzer Aug 4, 2017
Win McNamee/Getty Images

Trump’s jobs tweet might have broken federal rules

Nancy Marshall-Genzer Aug 4, 2017
Win McNamee/Getty Images

President Trump has been tweeting about the economy a lot lately, and this morning was no different. But one of his tweets caught our eye.

Notice he said the jobs numbers had just been released. That’s true; the Bureau of Labor Statistics had published them just 15 minutes earlier. That puts Trump’s tweet in violation of a federal rule (page three). It says, in part, when federal data is released, “employees of  the Executive Branch shall not comment publicly on the data until at least one hour after the official release time.”

The White House apologized in March when  former spokesman Sean Spicer and former Chief of Staff Reince Preibus tweeted prematurely about jobs numbers and the president retweeted a Drudge Report post, CNN notes. 

The delay is meant to ensure that the markets have time to digest the data before government officials start talking about it. Earlier this year, many observers, including us, noted that the president’s itchy Twitter finger could roil markets.

We reached out to the BLS for comment, and we’ll update this post if we hear back.

As a nonprofit news organization, our future depends on listeners like you who believe in the power of public service journalism.

Your investment in Marketplace helps us remain paywall-free and ensures everyone has access to trustworthy, unbiased news and information, regardless of their ability to pay.

Donate today — in any amount — to become a Marketplace Investor. Now more than ever, your commitment makes a difference.