(Corrects network for interview to Fox Business in paragraph 8)
WASHINGTON, March 14 U.S. Treasury Secretary
Jack Lew was brimming with optimism in a series of television
interviews on Thursday, saying he did not see a stock market
bubble building on Wall Street and expressing hope the Obama
administration and Congress could find common ground in battles
over the budget.
"The analysis I've seen doesn't give me reason to be worried
right now," Lew told CNBC television when asked about the
possibility that a bubble was building in the stock markets.
In his first round of media interviews since taking office
late last month, Lew also said the administration continues to
pursue a strong dollar policy.
"A strong dollar is in America's interest and that will
continue to be our policy," he told CNBC.
The dollar has rallied sharply against a basket of
currencies in recent days after U.S. economic data suggested the
American economy is outperforming its major counterparts.
At the same time, the Dow Jones industrial average extended
its recent winning streak on Thursday, a 10-day string of gains
not seen since late 1996, while the S&P 500 closed in sight of
its record high, driven by an improving economy and a loose
monetary policy from the Federal Reserve.
Lew, the top economic spokesman for President Barack Obama,
also weighed in on the budget struggles between the White House
and Republicans in Congress. He said there were members from
both parties who were interested in coming to an agreement to
avoid across-the-board government spending cuts that kicked in
on March 1 and risk derailing the economic recovery.
"I think we're in an environment now where there's a
constructive conversation going on," he said in an interview on
Fox Business. "I continue to live my life as an optimist."
(Reporting by Anna Yukhananov, Doug Palmer and Lucia Mutikani;
Editing by Diane Craft)