Business Review Board / January 27, 2017

Obama’s Failed Economic Policies

GDP was sluggish again last quarter, but things are also looking brighter.

GDP numbers are in for the final quarter of 2016 — Barack Obama’s last quarter — and they are unsurprisingly dismal. “The U.S. economy’s expansion slowed [to 1.9% growth] in the fourth quarter, and annual growth failed to reach 3% for an 11th straight year,” reports Market Watch. “For the full year, the U.S. grew just 1.6%, compared with its 2.6% clip in 2015. It was the weakest performance since 2011. The last time the U.S. topped 3% growth — the historical average is 3.3% — was in 2005.” It turns out that drastically increasing federal spending and taxes, and putting massive regulations on the economy, primarily in the forms of ObamaCare, Dodd-Frank and climate standards, don’t translate into a booming economy. Who knew?

The good news, of course, is that Obama isn’t in office any longer, and Republicans control the White House and Congress once again. That means free market policies, including lower regulations and taxes, as well as ObamaCare repeal all have a chance. So it’s no wonder that, despite the anemic state of the economy right now, there are good signs. The Dow Jones Industrial average this week topped 20,000 for the first time ever, and according to Gallup, “Americans have viewed the economy more positively since President Donald Trump’s election in November than they did in the nine years prior.” It’s not quite true that there’s nowhere to go but up since we’re not technically in recession, but we fully expect to end that streak of sub-3% growth in the next couple of years if the right policies are implemented. And that’s a refreshing place to be.

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