CNBC News Releases

CNBC TRANSCRIPT: TREASURY SECRETARY STEVEN MNUCHIN SPEAKS WITH "SQUAWK BOX" TODAY

WHEN: Today, Monday, May 21, 2018

WHERE: CNBC'S "Squawk Box"

Following is the unofficial transcript of a CNBC interview with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin today on CNBC's "Squawk Box" (M-F 6AM – 9AM) today, Monday, May 21st. Following is a link to video of the interview on CNBC.com: https://www.cnbc.com/video/2018/05/21/secretary-mnuchin-weve-made-meaningful-progress-on-china-trade-talks.html?play=1.

All references must be sourced to CNBC.

JOE KERNEN: JOINING US NOW FROM WASHINGTON, TREASURY SECRETARY STEVEN MNUCHIN. AND MR. SECRETARY, THANKS FOR JOINING US SO MUCH. IT'S GREAT TO SEE YOU. CAN YOU FILL IN -- GIVE US SOME COLOR ON JUST THE STATEMENT THAT "THE TRADE WAR HAS BEEN PUT ON HOLD"?

SECRETARY STEVEN MNUCHIN: WELL, GREAT. THANK YOU. IT'S GREAT TO BE HERE WITH YOU. I THINK WE MADE VERY MEANINGFUL PROGRESS OVER THE PAST FEW DAYS. I THINK YOU KNOW THIS WAS OUR THIRD SESSION OF INTENSE DISCUSSIONS AND NEGOTIATIONS. AND WE CAME AWAY WITH A VERY COMPREHENSIVE FRAMEWORK AGREEMENT THAT NEEDS TO BE IMPLEMENTED BUT HAS LOTS OF DIFFERENT ASPECTS. ONE ASPECT OF IT, WHICH HAS BEEN THE PRESIDENT'S FOCUS ON CUTTING THE TRADE DEFICIT AND THAT'S BY INCREASING EXPORTS SIGNIFICANTLY. BUT THERE'S MANY OTHER ASPECTS. WE TALKED ABOUT TECHNOLOGY TRANSFERS. WE TALKED ABOUT MARKET REFORMS. WE TALKED ABOUT THEM LOWERING TARIFFS, OPENING UP MARKETS TO U.S. COMPANIES. SO I THINK WE'VE MADE VERY MEANINGFUL PROGRESS. AND NOW IT'S UP TO BOTH OF US TO MAKE SURE THAT WE CAN IMPLEMENT IT.

KERNEN: THAT'S REALLY CLEAR AND – BUT WHEN I CAME IN, I EXPECTED TO SEE, "TRADE WAR PUT ON HOLD," AS THE LEAD STORY IN "THE WALL STREET JOURNAL." INSTEAD, IT WAS "U.S. SENDS MIXED MESSAGES ON CHINA: DIFFERING STATEMENTS FROM THE TREASURY CHIEF AND THE TRADE REPRESENTATIVE CLOUD NEXT STEPS." IS THAT A – DID THEY GET THE STORY WRONG OR IS THERE – IS IT, YOU KNOW, EASY TO SEE THAT THERE'S SOME DISAGREEMENT BETWEEN DIFFERENT PARTIES IN THE WHITE HOUSE?

MNUCHIN: I THINK THEY GOT THE STORY COMPLETELY WRONG. AMBASSADOR LIGHTHIZER, MYSELF, SECRETARY ROSS LED ALL OF THE MEETINGS. I PROBABLY SPOKE TO AMBASSADOR LIGHTHIZER AT LEAST TEN TIMES A DAY OUTSIDE OF IT. I LOOKED AT AMBASSADOR LIGHTHIZER'S STATEMENT BEFORE HE PUT IT OUT. IT'S COMPLETELY CONSISTENT WITH THE TEAMS APPROACH. SO BOB AND I AND WILBUR ARE ALL COMPLETELY ON THE SAME PAGE. WE WERE IN THE OVAL OFFICE ON FRIDAY FOR TWO HOURS BRIEFING THE PRESIDENT ON THE EXTENSIVE DISCUSSIONS. SO THE TEAM IS UNIFIED ON THIS.

KERNEN: THERE'S EVEN A QUOTE HERE, I WANT TO KNOW WHO THIS IS AND MAYBE YOU KNOW, "THERE IS," -- I'M QUOTING – "THERE'S A GROWING FRUSTRATION WITH SECRETARY MNUCHIN GETTING AHEAD OF BOTH THE PRESIDENT AND THE TRADE TEAM ON THE DIRECTION OF THE NEGOTIATIONS. HIS EAGERNESS TO DO A DEAL SIGNIFICANTLY UNDERCUTS THE U.S. NEGOTIATING POSITION." WHO DO YOU THINK -- YOU THINK THAT'S EITHER NAVARRO OR LIGHTHIZER OR SOMEONE THAT WORKS FOR THEM? WHO DO YOU THINK GAVE THE JOURNAL THAT QUOTE?

MNUCHIN: I'M NOT GOING TO SPECULATE. BUT YOU KNOW I'VE BEEN WORKING WITH THE PRESIDENT SINCE THE CAMPAIGN. THIS IS AN ENORMOUSLY IMPORTANT PART OF OUR ECONOMIC PROGRAM FROM DAY ONE. WE HAD TAX REFORM, REGULATORY RELIEF AND TRADE. PEOPLE DIDN'T THINK WE'D GET TAX REFORM DONE. WE DID. THERE'S BEEN PEOPLE WHO WERE CYNICAL THAT WE'D GET MEANINGFUL PROGRESS ON TRADE. WE'RE ACCOMPLISHING THAT. AND REGULATORY RELIEF, I SPOKE TO THE PRESIDENT AT LEAST FIVE TIMES OVER THE WEEKEND AND ON THURSDAY AND FRIDAY. AND HE'S PERSONALLY BEEN PART OF THESE DISCUSSIONS, AND PROVIDING SPECIFICS INCLUDING ON THE COMMUNIQUE.

ANDREW ROSS SORKIN: SECRETARY MNUCHIN.

BECKY QUICK: GO AHEAD.

SORKIN: SECRETARY MNUCHIN, I WANTED TO ASK YOU WHERE THIS LEAVES ZTE AND ALSO WHETHER YOU THINK ZTE IS A NATIONAL SECURITY THREAT?

MNUCHIN: SO, LET ME BE VERY SPECIFIC ON ZTE BECAUSE I ALSO THINK THE STORY HAS BEEN MISREPORTED. NOT A SURPRISE, PRESIDENT XI ASKED PRESIDENT TRUMP TO LOOK INTO ZTE. THAT'S NO DIFFERENT THAN PRESIDENT CALLS UP WORLD LEADERS ON BEHALF OF AMERICAN COMPANIES ALL OF THE TIME. THE PRESIDENT ASKED MYSELF AND COMMERCE SECRETARY TO LOOK ITO IT. HE DIDN'T DICTATE ANY TERMS, HE JUST ASKED US TO LOOK INTO IT. THE COMMERCE POSITION WAS AN ENFORCEMENT ISSUE. THE INTENT WAS NOT TO PUT THE COMPANY OUT OF BUSINESS. IT WAS AN ENFORCEMENT ISSUE. I THINK, YOU KNOW, I CHAIR CFIUS, I'M ON THE NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL. WE'RE REVIEWING SOME POSSIBLE CHANGES BY THE COMMERCE DEPARTMENT TO THE ENFORCEMENT. AND I ASSURE THAT YOU THEY WILL SUPPORT OUR NATIONAL SECURITY POSITION. SO I THINK THERE'S PLENTY OF PEOPLE WHO ARE TRYING TO MAKE THIS OUT TO BE SOMETHING IT IS NOT. THERE WAS NO QUID PRO QUO. THERE WERE DISCUSSIONS BUT THIS WAS A COMPLETELY SEPARATE ISSUE THAT THE PRESIDENT ASKED US TO LOOK INTO.

QUICK: SECRETARY MNUCHIN, LET ME JUST TRY TO PUT A FINER POINT ON THIS FOR THE MARKETS BECAUSE WE ARE LOOKING AT THE MARKETS INDICATED UP BY ABOUT 240 POINTS THE DOW TODAY. BASED ON THIS IDEA OF WHAT YOU SAID YESTERDAY THAT THE TRADE WAR IS ON HOLD. NOW, BEFORE EVERYBODY TAKES OFF AND HEAD FOR THE HILLS WITH THIS AND REALLY RUN THINGS UP, THAT IS NOT THE TRADE WAR IS OVER. YOU ARE SAYING THAT WE'VE MADE PROGRESS, BUT WE DON'T KNOW WHAT COMES NEXT. HOW WOULD YOU TELL PEOPLE TO LOOK AT THIS? GLASS HALF FULL OR GLASS HALF EMPTY? -- IF YOU ARE SOMEBODY WHO IS WATCHING THE MARKETS TODAY.

MNUCHIN: IT IS COMPLETELY HALF FULL. AND WHAT I WOULD JUST SAY, CHRIS WALLACE ASKED ME IF THE TRADE WAR WAS ON HOLD SO I RESPONDED. WHAT I WOULD HAVE REALLY SAID IS, "THIS HAS BEEN A TRADE DISPUTE ALL ALONG. IT NEVER WAS A TRADE WAR. IT'S A TRADE DISPUTE ON SIGNIFICANT ISSUES. BOTH PARTIES HAVE AGREED TO SUSPEND THE TARIFFS—OUR 150, THERE 50. YOU SAW IN SORGHUM, THEY DROPPED THE CASE ON FRIDAY AS A SIGN OF GOOD FAITH. FOR OUR FARMERS, THIS IS GOING TO BE FABULOUS RIGHT AWAY. SECRETARY ROSS IS GOING OVER THERE. THEY'VE COMMITTED TO 35 OR 40% INCREASES IN FARM PRODUCTS IMMEDIATELY. IN ENERGY, I THINK THIS IS A MASSIVE OPPORTUNITY FOR THE U.S. TO BECOME A MAJOR SUPPLIER OF ENERGY TO CHINA. THEY HAVE INCREDIBLE AMOUNTS OF DEMAND AT THESE PRICES FOR OUR SHALE AND OUR LIQUID NATURAL GAS THIS IS A GREAT OPPORTUNITY. ALASKA HAS SIGNED AN MOU, IT'S BEING TURNED INTO A BINDING COMMITMENT RIGHT AWAY FOR ABOUT $10 BILLION A YEAR FOR A VERY, VERY LONG-TERM. AS I'VE MENTIONED, I THINK WE CAN EASILY GET $40 BILLION OR $50 BILLION OF ENERGY AND IF WE CAN PRODUCE AND SEND MORE WITH INFRASTRUCTURE, THEY CAN EVEN TAKE MORE. SO THERE ARE A LOT OF OPPORTUNITIES. THIS IS VERY, VERY GOOD FOR OUR ECONOMY, FOR OUR FARMERS. AND WE'LL SEE. WE'VE GOT TO EXECUTE. AS I'VE COMMENTED, THIS IS NOT A GIANT PURCHASE ORDER GOVERNMENT TO GOVERNMENT. WE NOW HAVE TO EXECUTE ON THIS AND CHINA HAS TO EXECUTE ON THIS.

KERNEN: WE'VE GOT TO -- OBVIOUSLY IT'S GOING TO TAKE SOME -- WHAT'S IT? TRUST BUT VERIFICATION BECAUSE COUNTRIES DON'T – THEY GO -- IF IT WAS IN THEIR BEST INTEREST TO HAVE BEEN BUYING ENERGY FROM US, THEY WOULD HAVE BEEN DOING IT ALL ALONG, I WOULD THINK. RIGHT? I MEAN, IT'S MARKET FORCES THAT CAUSE PEOPLE TO DO THINGS. IS THERE -- ARE THERE GUARANTEES THAT IT'S GOING TO WORK OUT? IT DOESN'T SEEM LIKE ANY OF THIS IS BINDING. AND WE'RE JUST TAKING IT AT THEIR WORD THAT THEY'LL START BUYING MORE FROM US.

MNUCHIN: WELL, AS I COMMENTED ON, WE NOW HAVE TO TURN THESE INTO BINDING AGREEMENTS AND THOSE BINDING AGREEMENTS WILL BETWEEN COMPANIES. SO SECRETARY ROSS IS GOING OVER TO NEGOTIATE THE FRAMEWORK SO THAT COMPANIES CAN ENTER INTO LONG-TERM AGRICULTURE SALES, LONG-TERM ENERGY SALES AND THOSE BECOME. NOW, OF COURSE, AT THE END OF THE DAY, THIS HAS TO BE IN OUR INTEREST AND IN THEIR INTEREST. THEY DO HAVE A GROWING ECONOMY WITH A LOT OF DEMAND. THEY WANT TO DIVERSIFY AWAY THEIR ENERGY SOURCES. AT THESE PRICES, IT'S VERY GOOD FOR US. AND WE NEED TO BUILD THE INFRASTRUCTURE. SO I THINK AS YOU KNOW, ONE OF THE CONCERNS THEY HAD WAS ARE WE GOING TO BE ABLE TO DELIVER ALL THESE ADDITIONAL GOODS? AND WE'VE SAID WE BELIEVE THE U.S. ECONOMY AND U.S. COMPANIES CAN. SOME OF THESE THINGS CAN BE EXECUTED IMMEDIATELY. SOME OF THESE THINGS WILL REQUIRE LONG-TERM CONTRACTS TO DELIVER INTO. BUT THIS SHOULD BE VERY, VERY GOOD FOR U.S. ECONOMIC GROWTH. YOU COMBINE THIS WITH TAX CUTS AND I THINK WE'RE LOOKING AT VERY STRONG GDP GROWTH FOR THE REST OF THE YEAR.

KERNEN: WHEN THE FREE TRADERS WOULD GROWL ABOUT TARIFFS AND WHY ARE WE DOING THIS, A LOT OF DEFENDERS OF THE ACTION WOULD SAY, "LOOK. WE HAVE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AND THE THEFT OF INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AND UNFAIR TECHNOLOGY GIVE AND TAKE BETWEEN CHINA AND THE UNITED STATES NEEDED TO BE ADDRESSED." TARIFFS ARE NOW GONE OR ON HOLD AND NONE OF THAT WAS ACTUALLY FIXED. SO -- OR WAS IT? IS THERE REASON FOR HOPE IN ALL THOSE OTHER AREAS, MR. SECRETARY?

MNUCHIN: THOSE ISSUES ARE PART OF OUR FRAMEWORK. THESE THINGS CAN'T BE FIXED OVERNIGHT. WE'VE HAD THREE MEETINGS. WE'RE GOING TO CONTINUE TO HAVE MEETINGS. AND IF THESE THINGS AREN'T FIXED, AND WE DON'T GET WHAT WE WANT, THE PRESIDENT CAN ALWAYS PUT TARIFFS BACK ON.

KERNEN: SO IT'S ON HOLD. SO IT'S LIKE A SWORD OF DAMOCLES – IT'S LIKE A SWORD OF DAMOCLES. THESE ARE STILL THERE. ON HOLD DOESN'T MEAN GONE. IT JUST MEANS WE'LL SEE THE BEHAVIOR.

MNUCHIN: EXACTLY, I WOULD USE THE WORD THEY'VE BEEN SUSPENDED. AND BY THE WAY, THIS IS THE SAME STRATEGY WE'VE USED ON SANCTIONS IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD. SO THE PRESIDENT IS THE FIRST ONE WHO'S BEEN DETERMINED TO BE TOUGH ON TRADE AND CHANGE THESE DEALS. AND THE PRESIDENT IS A FREE TRADER BUT HE'S ALSO A FAIR TRADER, AND HE WANTS TO MAKE SURE THEIR MARKETS ARE OPEN TO US THE WAY OUR MARKETS ARE OPEN TO THEM.

SORKIN: MR. SECRETARY, I HAVE TWO OTHER TOPICS I WANTED TO TOUCH ON. ONE IS A REPORT THAT BROOKFIELD PROPERTIES, WHICH IS BACKED BY THE QATARI GOVERNMENT AND IS GOING TO BE INVESTING IN 666 5th AVENUE, WHICH OF COURSE IN OWNED BY KUSHNER COMPANIES. THE QUESTION IS, WILL THAT TRANSACTION GO THROUGH CFIUS AND IF SO, IS THAT A TRANSACTION YOU WOULD BE INVOLVED WITH OR WOULD YOU HAVE TO RECUSE YOURSELF?

MNUCHIN: AGAIN, AS IT RELATES TO CFIUS I CAN'T MAKE ANY SPECIFIC COMMENTS. BUT I WILL TELL YOU SO FAR I'VE READ ABOUT THAT IN THE PAPER AND AM NOT AWARE OF ANYTHING ELSE. BUT I'M NOT GOING TO MAKE ANY COMMENTS ON IT IN THE FUTURE ON CFIUS-SPECIFIC ACTIONS.

SORKIN: OKAY. AND THEN THE OTHER QUESTION I WANTED TO ASK YOU IS, IN THE WAKE OF THIS SCHOOL SHOOTING THIS FRIDAY AND THROUGHOUT THIS YEAR GIVEN SOME OF THE ISSUES THAT HAVE TAKEN PLACE, A NUMBER OF BIG BANKS HAVE DISTANCED THEMSELVES FROM GUN MANUFACTURERS ON THEIR OWN AND -- BUT THERE'S BEEN A BIT OF CONCERN THAT THERE'S GOING TO BE RETALIATION FROM DIFFERENT PARTS OF GOVERNMENT. AND SPECIFICALLY THERE WAS A REPORT THAT THE S.E.C. AND S.E.C. COMMISSIONERS HAVE MADE SOME COMMENTS TO SOME OF THE BANKS RETALIATING, IN TERMS OF REGULATIONS. HOW DO YOU OVERSEE THAT ISSUE GIVEN THAT YOU OVERSEE THE BANKS?

MNUCHIN: WELL FIRST OF ALL, LET ME JUST SAY: I WANT TO

EXPRESS MY CONDOLENCES FOR THE FAMILIES WHO WERE INVOLVED. IT OBVIOUSLY IS A VERY DIFFICULT ISSUE AND I KNOW SOMETHING THAT THE PRESIDENT IS FOCUSED ON. AS IT RELATES TO ANY SPECIFIC REGULATORY ISSUES, WE HAVEN'T REVIEWED THAT YET. AND IF THOSE BECOME IMPORTANT, WE WILL REVIEW THEM AT FSOC.

QUICK: MR. SECRETARY, BACK TO TRADE. WHAT CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT NAFTA AND WHERE THINGS STAND THERE? -- BECAUSE OBVIOUSLY THE MARKET IS BREATHING A SIGH OF RELIEF ABOUT THE SITUATION WITH CHINA. WHAT HAPPENS NEXT WITH NAFTA?

MNUCHIN: WELL I KNOW AMBASSADOR LIGHTHIZER HAS BEEN VERY FOCUSED ON NAFTA. AS HE SAID THERE'S STILL SOME VERY SIGNIFICANT OPEN ISSUES. I HAD A GOOD CONVERSATION WITH BOTH THE MEXICAN FINANCE MINISTER AND THE CANADIAN FINANCE MINISTER LAST WEEK. I THINK THERE IS A DESIRE ON ALL THREE PARTIES TO TRY TO GET THIS DEAL DONE. THE AMBASSADOR HAS DONE AN ENORMOUS AMOUNT OF WORK. WE'LL SEE WHERE WE GET OVER THE NEXT FEW WEEKS. THE PRESIDENT IS INVOLVED IN THESE DISCUSSIONS. I KNOW HE'S HAD CONVERSATIONS WITH TRUDEAU. SO WE'LL SEE WHERE WE GET. WE'RE STILL TRYING TO GET A NEW DEAL DONE. THAT IS A PRIORITY FOR THE PRESIDENT. BUT AS I'VE SAID, HE WANTS A GOOD DEAL AND THAT'S WHAT HE'S FOCUSED ON.

QUICK: WE HAD SENATOR BARRASSO ON WITH US FOR AN HOUR THIS MORNING. AND HE TALKED A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THAT HE HIMSELF WOULD LIKE TO SEE A DEAL THAT CONGRESS DOESN'T HAVE TO SIGN OFF ON. SOMETHING KIND OF AROUND THE EDGES – A NAFTA LIGHT, AS IT MIGHT BE. BECAUSE HE'S WORRIED ABOUT THE COMPLICATIONS OF ACTUALLY BEING ABLE TO GET IT THROUGH CONGRESS. WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON THAT? MNUCHIN: WELL I'VE HEARD THAT IDEA AS A SKINNY DEAL. I THINK FOR RIGHT NOW WE'RE STILL FOCUSED ON A NEW NAFTA THAT WOULD GO THROUGH CONGRESS, BUT WE EASILY CAN LOOK AT THE SKINNY DEAL AS AN ALTERNATIVE AND THAT'S SOMETHING THE PRESIDENT CAN CONSIDER. AGAIN, FOR THE MOMENT, THE PRESIDENT IS FOCUSED ON HE WANTS TO GET BETWEEN THE THREE COUNTRIES AND THEN WE'LL FIGURE OUT HOW TO GET IT THROUGH CONGRESS.

KERNEN: MR. SECRETARY, CAN YOU GIVE US ANY COLOR ON THE REPORTED NAVARRO/MNUCHIN SMACKDOWN – SMACKDOWN THAT HAPPENED ON YOU. I DON'T KNOW IF YOU'RE ON RECORD COMMENTING ON THAT. WAS IT OVERPLAYED? WAS IT A DISAGREEMENT? AND WHERE DOES IT STAND RIGHT NOW?

MNUCHIN: PETER'S BEEN AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE TEAM. I'M NOT GOING TO COMMENT ON ANY OF THESE SPECIFICS. OBVIOUSLY RUMORS AND GOSSIP AND EVERYTHING ELSE IS GOOD FOR YOUR CABLE TV, BUT I'M NOT GOING TO MAKE ANY COMMENTS ON IT.

KERNEN: IS HE – AND HE'S PRESIDENT AT MANY OF THE WORKING GROUPS? ANY OF THE THINGS STILL GOING ON. MR. NAVARRO STILL A VALUED MEMBER OF THE TEAM. I THINK THE PRESIDENT LIKES TWO SIDES OF THINGS. AT LEAST BOTH SIDES WILL BE HIGHLIGHTED, RIGHT?

KERNEN: PETER PARTICIPATED IN THE OVAL OFFICE MEETING WITH THE VICE PREMIER AND MYSELF AND THE VICE PRESIDENT. ACTUALLY, IT WAS -- I THINK WE PROBABLY HAD ABOUT TEN PEOPLE IN THE OFFICE. THE PRESIDENT WANTED TO HAVE A LOT OF PEOPLE THERE. THE CHIEF WAS THERE. AMBASSADOR BOLDIN, THE VICE PRESIDENT, LARRY SO WE HAD A LOT OF PARTICIPATION. THIS TIME WE THOUGHT IN TERMS OF THE INTENSE NEGOTIATIONS, IT WOULD JUST BE LIMITED TO THE THREE OF US ON THE SIDE. BUT LET ME JUST TELL YOU, THE CHINA TEAM BROUGHT 70 PEOPLE WITH THEM. THEY ARE WORKING AROUND THE CLOCK, EVEN WHEN WE WENT HOME AT NIGHT. AND WE HAD PEOPLE FROM EVERY AGENCY THAT WE INVOLVED, EITHER ON THE PHONE OR IN THE TREASURY BUILDING AS WE WERE DOING THESE NEGOTIATIONS.

KERNEN: AS IS OUR HABIT WITH ALL TREASURY SECRETARIES, BUT MAYBE EVEN MORE WITH YOU, MR. SECRETARY, I GUESS WE'VE GOT TO TALK ABOUT THE DOLLAR A LITTLE. I DON'T WHERE I SAW IT -- I SAW IT THIS MORNING ON ONE OF THE FINANCIAL WEBSITES THAT THE DOLLAR BEING SO STRONG THREATENS A LOT OF OUR INITIATIVES AND IT ACTUALLY THREATENS THE STRONG ECONOMY RIGHT NOW. WOULD YOU PREFER A WEAKER DOLLAR AT THIS POINT?

MNUCHIN: LET ME BE VERY SPECIFIC ON MY DOLLAR COMMENTS, SO THESE ARE NOT MISINTERPRETED. LET ME BE CLEAR.

KERNEN: GO AHEAD.

MNUCHIN: THE DOLLAR IS THE MOST LIQUID TRADING MARKET IN THE WORLD. WE RESPECT THE FREE TRADING OF THE DOLLAR. IN THE LONG-TERM, A STRONG DOLLAR IS GOOD FOR THE UNITED STATES AND REFLECTS THE SUCCESS OF THE UNITED STATES BOTH IN THE ECONOMY, THE INVESTMENTS, AND EVERYTHING ELSE. I AM NOT GOING TO MAKE ANY COMMENTS ON WHERE THE DOLLAR IS RIGHT NOW OR SHORT-TERM TRADING OF THE DOLLAR.

KERNEN: ALL RIGHT BUT AS LONG AS YOU'RE HERE, I JUST GOT MORE QUESTIONS FOR YOU. BUT WE'RE GOING TO BE READY TO LET YOU GO IN A SECOND. BUT DO YOU THINK THE 3% GDP NUMBER FOR THE YEAR WILL GET CRACKED IN 2018 AND ARE YOU CONFIDENT THAT THAT WILL BE THE CASE?

MNUCHIN: IF I WERE BETTING I'D BET – I'D ABSOLUTELY TAKE THE OVER INSTEAD OF THE UNDER. I THINK WE ARE WELL ON OUR WAY TO 3% OR HIGHER SUSTAINED GROWTH AND THAT'S REALLY BEEN THE FOCUS. AND THAT'S WHAT EVERYBODY SHOULD BE FOCUSED ON. THAT'S OUR SCORE CARD. AND THE MARKETS REFLECT THAT, THE JOBS REPORT REFLECTS THAT, THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN 2% AND 3%, TRILLIONS OF DOLLARS TO THE ECONOMY, ECONOMIC GROWTH, NATIONAL SECURITY, THOSE ARE THE PRESIDENT'S TWO MOST IMPORTANT PRIORITIES. I THINK, YOU KNOW, WE'RE BEING VERY AGGRESSIVE ON NATIONAL SECURITY USING SANCTIONS ALL OVER THE WORLD AND THE ECONOMIC PROGRAM IS REALLY PAYING OFF.

KERNEN: OKAY. WE HEAR NO ONE TALKS ABOUT THE STOCK MARKET ANYMORE. THAT'S WHAT WE'VE BEEN HEARING SINCE IT'S BEEN KIND OF FLAT SINCE FEBRUARY. BUT I DON'T KNOW HOW CLOSE YOU'RE FOLLOWING IT, BUT YOU MAY SEE A 25,000 PRINT ON THE DOW AGAIN TODAY.

MNUCHIN: I CAN ASSURE YOU, I FOLLOW IT STILL PRETTY CAREFULLY. I'VE ALWAYS SAID WHERE IT IS ON ANY ONE DAY, AGAIN, I'M NOT GOING TO COMMENT. I'M VERY BULLISH ON STOCKS. I THINK THAT REFLECTS A STRONG ECONOMY, WILL REFLECT A STRONGER STOCK MARKET. THERE'S OBVIOUSLY BEEN, YOU KNOW, VARIOUS DIFFERENT WORLD EVENTS AND THINGS THAT HAVE CREATED SOME VOLATILITY. BUT THE STOCK MARKET IS UP AN ENORMOUS AMOUNT SINCE THE ELECTION AND WITH ALL OF OUR ECONOMIC PLANS IN PLACE, I WOULDN'T BE SURPRISED TO SEE IT HIGHER BY THE END OF THE YEAR.

KERNEN: DID YOU SEE "60 MINUTES" LAST NIGHT, MR. SECRETARY?

MNUCHIN: I DID NOT.

KERNEN: OH, YOU DIDN'T. ALRIGHT. JUST WONDER—

QUICK: JOE'S JUST TAKING A POLL.

KERNEN: YEAH, I'M TAKING A POLL. IF YOU SAW IT WITH GOOGLE, IT WAS INTERESTING. THAT'S A HELL OF A COMPANY OBVIOUSLY. BUT -- AND WHEN YOU GET THAT GOOD AND HAVE THAT GREAT A MOAT, YOU WONDER IF IT'S A MONOPOLY OR NOT. I JUST WONDERED IF YOU VIEW IT AS A MONOLOPY – GOOGLE?

MNUCHIN: WELL, I WOULD JUST SAY THE ISSUE OF MONOPOLIES ARE OUT OF MY LANE. THAT IS WITHIN THE JUSTICE DEPARTMENT. BUT I THINK THESE ARE ISSUES THAT THE DEPARTMENT NEEDS TO LOOK AT SERIOUSLY. NOT FOR ANY ONE COMPANY BUT OBVIOUSLY, AS THESE TECHNOLOGY COMPANIES HAVE A GREATER AND GREATER IMPACT ON THE ECONOMY I THINK THAT YOU HAVE TO LOOK AT THE POWER THEY HAVE AND IT'S SOMETHING THAT THE JUSTICE DEPARTMENT I HOPE TAKES A SERIOUS LOOK AT, WITHOUT ME MAKING ANY COMMENTS AS TO WHETHER THEY SHOULD BE OR THEY SHOULDN'T BE, BUT THESE ISSUES DESERVE TO BE REVIEWED CAREFULLY.

KERNEN: YEAH. THEY'VE GOT A LOT ON THEIR PLATE I'M TOLD – THE JUSTICE DEPARTMENT. I DON'T KNOW WHAT I MEAN BY THAT. BUT THERE ARE A FEW THINGS HAPPENING OVER IN THAT AREA. MR. SECRETARY, THANKS AGAIN FOR ALL THE TIME YOU SO GRACIOUSLY GAVE US THIS MORNING. THANK YOU.

MNUCHIN: ALWAYS GOOD TO SEE YOU. THANK YOU.

For more information contact:

Jennifer Dauble
CNBC
t: 201.735.4721
m: 201.615.2787
e: jennifer.dauble@nbcuni.com

Emma Martin
CNBC
t: 201.735.4713
m: 551.275.6221
e: emma.martin@nbcuni.com

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