Obama hosts a roundtable with CEOs at the White House in Washington.
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President Barack Obama, who made few friends in corporate board rooms early in his first term as he pressed for tighter regulations on banks and remarked on the "fat cats" who helped precipitate the financial crisis, heads into his final year in the White House having built – or rebuilt – alliances with chief executives of the nation's biggest companies. The president and his top advisers have kept an open door for CEOs of Fortune 100 companies, keeping almost 1,000 appointments with them, a Reuters review of White House records shows. Obama is the first U.S. president to make White House visitor logs public.That decision showed that White House meetings only go so far, said John Engler, president of the Business Roundtable, which represents CEOs of large companies.At the end of a session with some CEOs in February 2011, one attendee recalled how a chief executive told Obama that two new Environmental Protection Agency rules would push U.S. semiconductor manufacturing offshore.The logs show only a handful of CEOs have landed one-on-one visits in the Oval Office with the president, including Honeywell's Cote, former Wal-Mart Stores Inc. CEO Michael Duke, former Intel CEO Paul Otellini, Merck & Co Inc.'s Ken Frazier, AT&T Inc.'s Randall Stephenson, and FedEx Corp.'s Fred Smith.The logs showed that 22 Fortune 100 CEOs have been to the White House only once or not at all.Halliburton Co. CEO David Lesar has not been to the White House during Obama's tenure, according to the logs.
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