Obama wants a do-over with business

obama_smbiz.gi.top.jpgPresident Obama said the administration's relationship with business "has not been managed by me as well as it needed to be." By Jennifer Liberto, senior writer


WASHINGTON (CNNMoney.com) -- One day after a "shellacking" in the congressional election, President Obama acknowledged Wednesday that he needs to improve his relations with business.

"As I reflect on what's happened over the last two years, it's one of the things that I think has not been managed by me as well as it needed to be," Obama said at a news conference following the Republican victory that put the House in GOP hands.

Obama laid out the litany of crises and White House policy pushes that cast the business community in a negative light, starting with the financial crisis, big bonuses, the health care debate and, most recently, the BP oil spill.

Obama said he wants to mend bridges more publicly with the business community while seeking policy initiatives that help create jobs.

He said he's been doing that "behind the scenes" in meetings between White House officials and corporate executives, but he acknowledged the need to work on the more public relationship.

IRS reporting rule: In the spirit of helping the business community, Obama announced that he would support a policy change to undo one piece of the new health care law that required businesses to notify the Internal Revenue Service of purchases over $600.

The idea behind the measure was to ensure that all income gets disclosed and help generate more tax dollars to help pay for the cost of the reforms. But small businesses had declared the new rule burdensome and Republicans call it a "job-killing" mandate.

Even some Democrats had proposed legislation easing the rule, but Wednesday's press conference marked the first time President Obama declared his support for such a rollback.

Behind the scenes: Obama also talked about his work on behalf of the business community pressing China to rejigger its currency exchange policy, which would help U.S. exports.

He said he had invited a "whole bunch of corporate executives" to join him when he attends the Group of 20 meetings in Asia later this month, "so that I can help them open up those markets and allow them to sell their products."

But Obama added that he needs to do more.

"I think setting the right tone publicly is going to be important and could end up making a difference at the margins in terms of how businesses make investment decisions," Obama said. To top of page

Frontline troops push for solar energy
The U.S. Marines are testing renewable energy technologies like solar to reduce costs and casualties associated with fossil fuels. Play
25 Best Places to find rich singles
Looking for Mr. or Ms. Moneybags? Hunt down the perfect mate in these wealthy cities, which are brimming with unattached professionals. More
Fun festivals: Twins to mustard to pirates!
You'll see double in Twinsburg, Ohio, and Ketchup lovers should beware in Middleton, WI. Here's some of the best and strangest town festivals. Play
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 16,912.11 -70.48 -0.42%
Nasdaq 4,442.70 -2.21 -0.05%
S&P 500 1,969.95 -8.96 -0.45%
Treasuries 2.46 -0.03 -1.16%
Data as of 11:00pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
Frontier Communicati... 6.79 0.85 14.31%
Windstream Holdings ... 11.83 1.30 12.35%
AT&T Inc 36.59 0.94 2.64%
CenturyLink Inc 39.90 2.19 5.81%
Bank of America Corp... 15.34 -0.16 -1.03%
Data as of 4:03pm ET

Sections

McDonald's may be liable for worker lawsuits, not just franchisees, in a government ruling that could change the fast-food business. More

Amgen is the latest to continue corporate America's cost cutting strategy, even as the economy is supposedly on the mend More

Bunch o Balloons allows multiple water balloons to be filled at once. Parents are loving it -- to the tune of $645,000. More

Steve Mason, a pastor from California, inherited more than $100,000 in student loan debt when his 27-year-old daughter died suddenly in 2009. With interest and late penalties, the debt has since ballooned to $200,000. More

Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.