Canadian and US trade officials failed to come to an agreement by a deadline imposed by President Trump, but both sides said that progress had been made. Talks will continue next week.
Equities recovered in New York from a down day, just barely inching into positive territory ahead of close.
Headlines in Canada focused on a “bombshell leak” to the Toronto Star of “insulting” remarks made by Trump, which suggested that his administration wasn’t going to make any concessions.
The Star published comments made by Trump during an interview with Bloomberg News on Thursday, which he intended to be off the record.
“Here’s the problem. If I say no — the answer’s no. If I say no, then you’re going to put that, and it’s going to be so insulting they’re not going to be able to make a deal … I can’t kill these people,” the Star quoted Trump as saying
A possible deal, Trump said, would be “totally on our terms.”
“Off the record, Canada’s working their ass off. And every time we have a problem with a point, I just put up a picture of a Chevrolet Impala,” Trump said, referring to a GM model that is manufactured in Canada.
Wow, I made OFF THE RECORD COMMENTS to Bloomberg concerning Canada, and this powerful understanding was BLATANTLY VIOLATED. Oh well, just more dishonest reporting. I am used to it. At least Canada knows where I stand!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 31, 2018
The Star said of the remarks that the news organization was not bound by Bloomberg’s agreement to keep the comments off the record, and had not agreed to such terms.
Global News confirmed that Canadian officials had confronted American counterparts at trade talks on Friday regarding the remarks.
Despite the US president’s comments, and the failure to smooth over differences as of yet, the top US trade official, Robert Lighthizer said that progress had been made. Canada’s Chrystia Freeland said in a briefing Friday afternoon that a “win-win-win agreement is within reach.”