Obama Announces Commerce, Trade Nominees

President Obama on Thursday nominated Penny Pritzker to run the Commerce Department. An heiress to the Hyatt hotel empire and one of Forbes' 300 richest Americans, she also served on the President's Economic Recovery Advisory Board. Obama also nominated a new U.S. Trade Representative. Michael Froman is a senior economic adviser to the president and a former Citigroup executive.

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RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with two new cabinet appointments.

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MONTAGNE: This morning, President Obama appointed Penny Pritzker to run the commerce department.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Pritzker is an heiress to the Hyatt hotel empire. She also served on the president's Economic Recovery Advisory Board, and she is a long time financial backer of the president's political campaigns. Forbes ranks her as one of 300 richest Americans.

MONTAGNE: President Obama also nominated a new U.S. trade representative. Michael Froman is a senior economic advisor to the president and former executive at Citigroup. The announcements come as Obama heads to Mexico where trade will be on the agenda.

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