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Obama’s barbed words worry corporate world

The Associated Press – Relations between President Barack Obama and U.S. corporate leaders have grown tense in recent weeks, with business groups bristling over his sharp rebukes of lenders and multinational companies in particular.

Executives and trade groups that praised Obama’s outreach during his post-election transition period say they have felt less welcome since he took office in January. More troubling, they say, are his populist-tinged, sometimes acid critiques of certain sectors, including large companies that keep some profits overseas to reduce their U.S. tax burden.

On Thursday in New Mexico, Obama chastised the credit card industry for sharply raising interest rates or fees with hard-to-find notice. He said consumers should be protected from "all kinds of harsh penalties and fees that you never knew about." Some of the dealings by credit card companies, he said, "are not honest."

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