Obama and one last GDP under 2%
Before we forget President Obama, we should recall one important feature of his presidency: no economic growth!
This is a summary of the last quarter of the Obama presidency:
The growth in the U.S. economy in the final quarter of Barack Obama's presidency was left at 1.9%, held down by a bigger trade deficit even as consumer spending rebounded strongly.
The government's second look at gross domestic product in the fourth quarter showed a bigger increase in purchases by consumers than initially reported: 3% vs. 2.5%. What Americans spend has the biggest influence by far on GDP, the official scorecard for the U.S. economy.
Yet the increase in what consumers spent was offset by somewhat smaller gains in business investment and local and state spending, revised government figures reveal. As a result, GDP was unchanged from the original estimate.
So we can finally call it the "no growth" presidency despite a huge stimulus and deficit spending for eight years.
No growth has consequences, as we see in this report about the state of some retailers in the nation:
The number of U.S. retailers ranked at the most-distressed level of the credit-rating spectrum has more than tripled since the Great Recession of 2008-2009 and is heading toward record levels in the next five years, Moody's Investors Service said Monday.
To be fair, retailers are facing a tough challenge from online services and other distribution methods. Nevertheless, it is another sign that no growth means that someone's cash register won't be ringing.
My advice to President Trump is simple: it's growth, growth, and more growth. Drop the media bashing and talk over their heads about the state of this lousy economy that President Obama left him.