Trump enemies 'dying' for a recession, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross says

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross is debunking the notion that the U.S. economy may slip into a recession in 2020.

"The enemy keeps postponing when the recession is going to come," he said on a FOX Business interview on "Varney & Co." Friday. "They’re dying to have a recession."

Ross was referring to critics of the Trump administration whom he said can’t bear the thought of going into the next presidential election with a robust economy.

According to a Zillow research report of 100 real estate and economic experts, half of the panel surveyed predict the next recession to begin next year. The U.S. economy is in its longest uninterrupted economic expansion in the country’s history. But uncertainties in the continuing trade war between the U.S. and China have weighed on the economy.

Economic growth in the second quarter rose at a 2.1 percent annualized rate, according to the Commerce Department’s latest GDP numbers. The report signals a slowdown from the first quarter's 3.1 percent growth rate but beat Wall Street’s expectations of 1.8 percent.

Ross said Boeing’s 737 Max jet grounding spilled over into the economy.

"That probably took four-tenths of a point off," he said. "So it’s really better than the number really said and that will come in once those problems are solved and those planes are delivered."


Ross also weighed in on the Trump administration's trade talks with China as the U.S. delegation of Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer face off next week with Chinese officials in Shanghai.

"The real question next week is, 'Will they go back to where we were before they changed their mind?'" he said. "That’s what the important thing is because we were very close to a transaction before and not just at the 40,000-foot level, fairly detailed level."