REFILE-UPDATE 1-White House budget official Zients frontrunner for trade chief

Reuters Middle East

WASHINGTON, Feb 6 (Reuters) - White House deputy budget

director Jeffrey Zients is President Barack Obama's frontrunner

to take over as U.S. Trade Representative, sources familiar with

the matter said on Wednesday.

Zients has served as acting director of the White House

Office of Management and Budget and is well liked within the

administration.

Though Zients was considered a candidate to become director

of OMB, sources said Obama had chosen Walmart Foundation head

Sylvia Mathews Burwell for that job. An announcement of her

selection was expected soon.

Chicago businesswoman Penny Pritzker was being considered

for secretary of commerce, two sources said. Pritzker is a

friend of Obama's and was a top fundraiser for his campaign.

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