From 2010 to the first three quarters of 2016, Obama’s economic growth averaged 2.1%. Trump has already hit 3% in March and every indication is that the economy is just starting to roar. Indeed, Trump’s first quarter would beat the average from 1982 to 2009, wherein real GDP averaged 2.8%. Under Obama, labor force participation shrank to its lowest level in decades, to 62.8%. That number has already recovered under Trump. Moreover, in three consecutive reports, the United States has set records for the number of Americans employed at over 153 million. Obama’s supporters liked to claim there was job growth in his administration, but separating out government jobs from real, productive private sector jobs is a different matter. What is most interesting is that under Trump, manufacturing job growth has exceeded government job growth for the first time in decades.
Under Trump, the “official” unemployment rate that Obama touted for his tenure fell to a healthy 4.4%, a 10 year low, accompanied by rapid business expansion. The U6 number—which the fake news media has only started again to report on (which includes those who have stopped looking for work)—still exceeds 8, but many observers thought it was in the mid-teens in Obama’s weakest years. Trump’s U-6 number is the lowest since August 2001.
What is more telling than raw statistics is the deafening drumbeat of news stories about companies expanding or opening new facilities. Consider these:
*Austrailian CEO Anthony Pratt announced he would invest $2 billion in American manufacturing because he has “confidence in Trump”
*McCain Foods (ID) announced it would invest $200 million in a facility with 180 direct and 650 indirect jobs.
*Atwood Marine (MI) announced plans to invest $2 million, creating 80 new jobs.
*Nokien Tyres (TN) to open a $360 million facility, creating 400 full-time jobs.
*Mohawk Co. (AL) is investing $70 million in a fiber plant, creating 380 new jobs.
*Natural Foods (SC) creating 180 new jobs.
*Infosys, a target of Trump’s H1B Visa crackdown, announced it would hire 10,000 Americans.
*Salesforce CEO Mark Beihoff said his company would add a staggering five million apprenticeships in quest of a $400 billion sales force.
*BAE (PA) is expanding its York plant (500 jobs).
*Allegion Americas (IN) is creating 100 new jobs averaging $83,000 a year.
Oh, all of the above? These are just some of the May 2017 announcements. Other writers have already commented on the “feelings” surveys, such as the Washington Post/ABC poll that said that the number of people who think the economy is improving is the highest since 2002, or the Gallup Satisfaction index, which reached its highest level in over two years, or the National Association of Manufacturing survey that found that 93.3% of manufacturers are positive about their company’s outlook for the year, an all time high. The Conference Board’s February survey hit 125.6, the highest level in 17 years.
Then there are the two elephants in the room, the repeal of Obamacare and the new tax plan being discussed. While the health care bill will face challenges in the Senate, already word of the hundreds of billions of dollars in tax savings that the House bill contained are filtering out.
The Employer Mandate alone amounts to a $270 billion tax cut, while the Chronic Care Tax totals $126 billion. Obama’s prescription drug tax, abolished under the health care bill, would cut taxes by $28 billion, and the health insurance tax that is removed will save Americans another $145 billion. The 3.8% surtax on investment income amounts to a $172 billion tax cut. And these are tall contained just in the American Health Care Act—not the forthcoming Trump tax cut plans.
It’s worth noting that liberals cannot debate the taxes imposed by Obamacare, so they have shifted to a deceptive argument portraying Obamacare as reducing the number of bankruptcies. Time.com concocted an article claiming that Obamacare had “slashed” personal bankruptcies by 50%—of course, without any direct proof. But in fact, we have an excellent test case for whether Obamacare could possibly have done this in the form of Romneycare in Massachusetts. A writer named “DoodleBob” produced an analysis of bankruptcies in Massachusetts that showed that after Romneycare bankruptcies there fell faster than the national average. If anything, then, Obamacare didn’t perform as well as Massachusetts. In fact, according to the American Journal of Medicine in its own study, “Massachusetts’ health reform has not decreased the number of medical bankruptcies.”
The Trump economy, already outpacing Obama’s, is only beginning to soar and is refocusing on production and investment—the keys, as George Gilder argued in the Reagan years, to genuine growth—not consumption. So there are some retailers facing hard times as we reorder the economy on lasting, solid economic principles rather than debt-fueled consumption. This is the best news of all, for it means that the hiring numbers we are seeing now are just the beginning.