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Goldman CEO Blankfein, a frequent Trump critic, says the president has America's back on the world stage

Key Points
  • Donald Trump is certainly a pro-business president, but he's not trying to enrich the wealthy, Blankfein says.
  • The Goldman CEO is traveling with President Trump as part of a business delegation led by the Commerce secretary.
Exclusive: Goldman's Blankfein says view on Trump is both critical and constructive

Donald Trump is certainly a pro-business president, but he's not trying to enrich the wealthy, Goldman Sachs chief Lloyd Blankfein told CNBC on Thursday.

Blankfein, a frequent critic of the White House, was traveling in Beijing with President Trump and a delegation of business leaders for the U.S. state visit to China.

The Trump administration is "a kind of champion for American interests," Blankfein said, but added he finds the president's rhetoric "excessive" sometimes.

"There are things I disagree," he said, reflecting, "maybe I haven't shown enough appreciation for the positives" of the Trump administration.

He stressed that he believes Trump is supporting business in such a way to boost the economy and help all Americans.

However, Blankfein noted, "It's not growth at all costs. We need to have some regulation."

Blankfein also talked about his firm's agreement to establish a $5 billion investment vehicle with China's sovereign wealth fund. He said the fund is aimed at putting money into "U.S. companies that could be helped by better access to China."

Meanwhile, he also told CNBC it's inevitable that the Chinese economy will be bigger than the U.S. economy based on the sheer population disparity alone. But on the measure of "purchasing power," China has already surpassed the U.S., he said.

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