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Will Trump Take Credit for Slowing GDP Growth?

Donald Trump has claimed credit for unemployment figures and job creation in January, February, and March of this year. Donald Trump is full of crap (we’ve discussed how assigning to Presidents credit for economic outcomes is fallacious), but let’s make him roll in his crap.

Donald Trump is slowing the economy:

Raaar! Donald Trump does his impression of a bearish economy.
Raaar! Donald Trump does his impression of a bearish economy.

The U.S. economy grew by just 0.7 percent in the first quarter of this year, according to the latest report from the Commerce Department. That’s below market expectations, and indicates the economy grew at the slowest pace in three years.

Weak auto sales and lower home-heating bills dragged down consumer spending, offsetting a pickup in investment led by housing and oil drilling. Employment costs rose 0.8 percent in the first quarter.

This “advance” estimate showed the U.S. economy with its slowest growth since the first quarter of 2014. The GDP growth for the fourth quarter of 2016 was 2.1 percent [Laurel Wamsley, “GDP Grew Just 0.7 Percent in First Quarter of 2017,” NPR: The Two-Way, 2017.04.28].

Donald Trump is also making inflation worse than Barack Obama did:

The price index for gross domestic purchases, which measures the prices paid for goods and services purchased by consumers, increased 2.6 percent in the first quarter. That’s compared with an increase of 2.0 percent in the fourth quarter of 2016 [Wamsley, 2017.04.28].

Donald Trump’s tax plan will only make the economy worse. Quick, before Trump does any more damage, lock him up!


  1. Donald Pay 2017-04-28

    No. Obama’s fault.

  2. Douglas Wiken 2017-04-28

    And don’t forget the really bigly “Blame Hillary” button on his desk.

    There are some advantages to being unpredictable or even a loose cannon, but that kind of behavior does not inspire confidence in Wall Street or in retail stores.

    Also, the disaster in the Ag economy may be having more impacts than already indicated. Ranchers and farmers are canceling travel plans, major purchases, etc. and the $100 loses per cow last year and the low and lowering corn prices, etc. are all echoing through the economy.

  3. Donald Pay 2017-04-28

    I don’t find myself in a mood to spend, and I think that’s true of many progressives. People have put 2 and 2 together as Trump has shown himself to be a buffoon. Here’s a stunner: consumer confidence is high, but growth is minimal. That is not a great omen. If you can’t get growth from that consumer, then what happens when people’s confidence slips.

    For myself, money that we might have used to buy stuff is being tucked away to allow us to make it through the coming Trump recession or Trump-caused nuclear conflagration or a Trump-caused Middle East misstep that causes oil price spikes. Even without a recession, stocks are vastly overbought, so a correction or major correction is bound to happen, and that could cause loss of consumer confidence and a recession.

  4. John 2017-04-28

    Douglas: they receive what they voted for. Give it to them hard and often. Voting has consequences. Let them reap what they sowed.

  5. John 2017-04-28

    45th’s 1st quarter economic “growth” annualized at 0.7% is exactly 1/3 of Obama’s last quarter of economic growth annualized at 2.5%. So is 45th a third of the president that was Obama?

    And then, despite holding a presidential and congressional majority the party that cannot and will not govern extends their continuing resolution for 1 week. They and their party are incompetent.

  6. jerry 2017-04-29

    True that Mr. Wiken. Another thing to look for is Wall Street, sky high and climbing with the billionaires trading and suckering in the little fellers into the same 2007 belief that unicorns exist with pots of gold at their finger tips. It has been an illusion there as retail markets show from lack of sales with continued job shedding.

    I have no idea what ag folks ever thought about why their lot was going to improve. trump already said he was gonna stop the ethanol subsidies, while corn producing states showed they did not care. South Dakota’s congressional dummies have continued to shoot COOL in the head as a non starter so why livestock producers thought their lot would be better is another sign that maybe they just do not want or need equipment and they have seen enough of the world through Fox News that they do not need vacations. South Dakota legislators (what an oxymoron) refuse to allow growth in the state while continuing to whistle past the graveyard. Why do we even need to delude ourselves thinking we need legislators, teats on a boar for sure. Or for that matter, even a governor or whatever it is he is supposed to do. Lt. Governor, is just slang for a high priced bore or something that rhymes with it. In short, we got what they deserved.

  7. mike from iowa 2017-04-29

    Drumpf and his spokesweasel Spice Barbie Spicer claimed unemployment numbers under Obama were fake, but the same numbers calculated the same way under Drumpf are real.

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