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Obama Economy: Stalled Growth

April 30, 2014

Today the Commerce Department released the latest disappointing Obama economic numbers: first quarter GDP grew at 0.1 percent. This follows growth of 2.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013, and 1.9 percent growth for all of 2013. The economy has now grown at a 0.1 percent annualized rate in two of the last six quarters. This data comes on the same day as a report that China will likely overtake the U.S. as the world’s largest economy this year. This would be the first time since 1872 that the U.S. does not lead the world’s economies. Meanwhile, Democrats have shown that they are tone deaf to the needs of the private sector. On the same week that these figures come out, Democrats will push a bill to raise the minimum wage to levels that would kill up to one million jobs and stifle economic activity.

This is not what the country’s economy needs. Washington should provide regulatory and fiscal certainty, so that the private economy can grow and create jobs. But the Obama administration has spent its five years overregulating, threatening tax hikes, and racking up nearly $7 trillion in new debt.

Obama’s max growth far below Reagan and Clinton


Source: Bureau of Economic Analysis.  Data is through first 21 quarters of presidency.

One of the things that can be expected from a recession is sharp growth after the recession is over. That has not happened in the Obama economy. In fact, looking at the economic record of all presidents — regardless of whether they presided during a recession or not — we can see that Obama’s record of high-growth quarters pales in comparison to his predecessors.

Gloomy Growth: Obama's high-growth quarters lags behind even Carter

Number of quarters* with real GDP growth of at least 3%


*For two-term presidents, totals are through 21 quarters. The first quarter of a presidential transition year is ascribed to the incoming president.   

Source: Bureau of Economic Analysis