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US monitoring Aust-China tensions: Hockey

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December 08, 2017

Joe Hockey says the US is monitoring reports of Chinese interference in Australian politics.

Former treasurer Joe Hockey is giving US president Donald Trump a gold star for economic management.

Australia's ambassador to the US pointed to the unemployment rate coming down, wages growth and US gross domestic product increasing at a 3.3 per cent annual rate in the third quarter.

"It's real growth, that's not an inflated Trump hit," Mr Hockey said during an appearance at the Australian National University in Canberra on Friday.

"He's done a lot in the first year. A hell of a lot reducing regulation, red tape."

Mr Hockey said there was visible momentum in the US economy.

For the first time since 2000, the number of Americans who believe the economy is headed in the right direction exceeds the number that don't, he said.

Mr Hockey acknowledged Mr Trump's unorthodox leadership style.

"He has disrupted traditionally what Washington does, which is (having) processes and proper procedures," he said with a laugh.

He played down the turmoil in the White House and the revolving door of staff leaving.

"Everyone tends to go through that," Mr Hockey said, adding that it wouldn't matter to people in rural America who support Trump because they have an anti-elitist world view.

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