April 2, 2018 / 10:23 PM / a year ago

Trump to nominate Muzinich as Treasury deputy secretary: White House

The U.S. Treasury building is seen in Washington, September 29, 2008. REUTERS/Jim Bourg

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump intends to nominate Justin Muzinich, an aide to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, to be the deputy secretary of the Treasury, the White House said on Monday.

Muzinich advises Mnuchin on tax reform and other domestic and international policy initiatives, the White House statement said. Before joining the Treasury Department, he was president of Muzinich & Co, an international investment firm, and taught at Columbia Business School, the statement added.

The New York Times said the Treasury had operated without a full-time deputy secretary, a position that includes overseeing a broad portfolio of policy matters such as taxes, financial regulation, trade and economic sanctions, since Mnuchin was confirmed early last year.

Trump has been revamping his economic team in recent weeks, including appointing Larry Kudlow as director of the National Economic Council to replace Gary Cohn.

“Far from a flamethrower, Mr. Muzinich, who spent most of his career on Wall Street, will add a more moderate voice with traditional conservative economic ideas to the table,” the Times said.

It said Muzinich, 40, had been serving as Mr. Mnuchin’s tax counselor and played a central role in drawing up and negotiating the $1.5 trillion tax overhaul passed by the U.S. Congress late last year.

The Times said Mnuchin welcomed the nomination in a statement and added: “Justin has established himself as a leader in the department, and played a key role in the passage of the Tax Cuts & Jobs Act.”

“He brings significant experience in financial services and in public policy and has become a reliable and trusted adviser on a number of important issues,” the secretary said.

During the 2016 presidential campaign, the Times said, Muzinich served as policy director for former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, one of more than a dozen Republican candidates defeated by Trump, and helped to craft Bush’s tax plan.

Reporting by Mohammad Zargham; Editing by Eric Beech and Peter Cooney

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