Trump picks conservative think tanker to chair Council of Economic Advisers

Kevin Hassett, Economist.
Adam Jeffery | CNBC

President Donald Trump has tapped an economist from the American Enterprise Institute, Kevin Hassett, to be chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, CNBC has confirmed.

Formal vetting for the CEA position is already underway, according to a source with direct knowledge on the situation.

Should he be confirmed, Hassett will work with National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn, tackling projects such as tax and budgetary reform.

Hassett is a tax expert with a Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. His presence in the Trump administration would address the concern of some economists, including former Republican and Democratic chairmen of the panel, that Trump lacked academic economists on his team.

—CNBC's Steve Liesman contributed to this report.