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Trump Economy? Don't Screw This Up!
Glenn "Caz" Cazenave
/ Categories: Economy, Opinion

Trump Economy? Don't Screw This Up!

Trump rides Obama's coat-tails.

President Donald Trump's supporters have been quick to point out the effect that his election has had on the American economy. Stock markets have hit a new high. Jobs have come back. Companies are moving back into the United States. Conservative media loves this narrative but it lives in the dead zone someplace between misleading and bold-face lie.

Stocks are indeed at an all-time high. That is absolutely true, but let's take a look at where we started. On January 20, 2009 the Dow Jones closed at 7949. Tonight as I write this, the Dow has closed at 21,184. Wow! Trump is crushing it, if you look at those 2 numbers without looking at anything thing else. The below are headlines from the last 8 years.

  • Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 7949 on 1/20/09\
  • Dow Hits New Record. For the first time in its history, the Dow Jones has hit 16,000!-Nov 18, 2013
  • Dow Jones Industrial Average hits 17,000 for the first time -Jul 3, 2014
  • Dow hits 18,000 for first time ever -Dec 23, 2014
  • Stunning! Dow hits new high of 19,000 as rally continues -Nov 22, 2016
  • Trump Inaugurated. Greeted with a bump 19,827.25, +94.85 -Jan 20, 2017

Since 2009, there has been a steady trend upwards in the amount of money injected into the U.S. stock exchange. The gallery charts show a visual representation of that trend with the Dow Jones and S&P 500.

On the jobs front, the latest unemployment number is a low 4.3%. Just as in the case of the stock market, the trend has been moving in that direction since 2009. The percentage of people unable to find employment reached a high of 10% in 2009 then started to fall as the economy improved. by the time President Obama left office the unemployment number had fallen to 4.7%. This is another case of Trump riding Obama's coattails. 

Many believe that Trump has improved the manufacturing outlook in America but this also butts up against the facts. While manufacturing output has increased more than 20 percent since 2009, manufacturing employment has grown just 5 percent. This is the result of technology. Those jobs are not coming back because they don't exist anymore. Automation is the only path to the future. There is no going back, as much Trump may have you believe the opposite.

Barring any unseen catastrophe, unemployment, stocks, and manufacturing should continue along the same positive trends but it is crazy to believe that President Trump has had ANY effect on these milestones.

Trump has proposed budgetary priorities that he believes will result in Gross National Product (GDP) increases in 4 or 5 or 6 percent. From 2009 through 2010 President Obama grew the GDP 5.3%. This is not likely to be repeated again in the next generation, again, barring a catastrophe. In that case, we had started in a hole 2009, with -2.8% GDP and grew to a positive number of 2.5% in 2010. Since then the yearly GDP has stayed between 1.6 and 2.6%. a rise to 3% would be considered to be improbable.

The general talking points of Republicans has been "The worst recovery ever." This negates the fact that we have actually recovered.

The best that we can hope now, is that Trump doesn't screw it up.

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