President Barack Obama has failed to get the nation’s economic growth to even reach the nation’s historical average during the post-2009 recovery — despite spending almost $10,000 billion in borrowed money and despite importing at least 10 million new immigrant workers and consumers.
His performance of 2.1 percent average annual growth is far below the historical average of 3.22 percent annual growth from 1947 to 2016. In fact, Obama’s economic record is so poor that he’s contributed eight years to the longest stretch of time without 3 percent growth since 1930.
His economy has slowly grown by only 13 percent from 2009 to 2016, versus a historical average of 21 percent.
If Obama had just met historical averages, his 2016 economy would be worth $18.14 trillion (in 2009 dollars, so excluding inflation). But his 2016 economy is struggling to reach $16.56 trillion, when counted in 2009 dollars. That’s $1.58 trillion — or $1,540 billion — below the the level accomplished by just average growth.
His failure to reach average performance is loss of roughly $10,000 for each of the 150 million Americans working in the economy.
His economic record is also far below his extravagant promises.
In 2010, he and his aides promised 31 percent economic growth by the end of 2016. But growth has been so slow that the economy is producing roughly $2.5 trillion less in goods and services than he predicted in his February 2010 long-term economic plan.
Obama posted his 2010 promises in Table 2-1 here. The real growth numbers are posted here.
Obama predicted a 2016 economy worth $19.14 trillion (measured in 2009 dollars, so excluding inflation). But his actual slow-growth economy is delivering an economy worth only $16.56 trillion (in 2009 dollars, excluding inflation). That’s up just 13 percent since 2009.
That failure has opened a $2.5 trillion gap, after counting inflation, between Obama’s high-growth promises and his slow-growth delivery. The gap is roughly $16,000 per working American in 2016 — and that gap will be felt every year in the future because of Obama’s slow growth.
That annual per-worker $16,000 gap will grow in future years unless the economy suddenly accelerates beyond Obama’s predictions. Even without a sudden acceleration, that gap between Obama’s promise and his record will cost Americans at least $80,000 over the next five years, or at least $160,000 over the next 10 years.
Obama’s economy looks better if the figures are inflated by inflation. So this year’s economy will reach $18.6 trillion in the government’s inflated accounting documents. But that $18.6 trillion is really only worth $16.56 trillion when inflation is excluded and it is counted in 2009 dollars.
Obama’s best year for economic growth was 2010, when federal spending spiked and the economy was emerging from the disastrous property bubble that he had supported while a lawyer and legislator in Illinois — but before his constrictive economic management plans had yet to kick in.
His economy grew 2.5 percent in 2010, but since then, his best years has been 2014 and 2015, when the economy grew by 2.4 percent, according to the World Bank. He got 1.6 percent growth in 2011, 2.2 percent growth in 2012, 1.5 percent in 2013, 2.4 percent in 2014, 2.4 percent in 2015, and is set for only 2.0 percent in 2016.
Obama had huge advantages — an economy eager to spring back from the 2008 crash, a massive drop in energy prices because of energy sector’s ability to frack cheap oil and gas out of the ground, plus massive rollout of new products from Silicon Valley.
He also had help from Congress whose Democratic and Republican leaders have approved his massive borrow-and-spend plans, which have added roughly $1 trillion per year to the taxpayers’ debt. The formal debt was $10.6 trillion in January 2009. In June 2016, it passed $19.2 trillion, heading upwards. That’s $150,000 in debt for each household, or roughly $130,000 for every person in the workforce.
Obama’s appointees at the Federal Reserve also created and spent $3 trillion to boost stock prices. That was a boon to wealthy shareholders, but it also lowered interest rates to spur investment — which also slashed interest-income for cautious savers by roughly $7.5 billion.
Interest rates have been at historic lows, which should have spurred a wave of investment. But investment has slowed as Obama extended his aggressive regulation of numerous economic sectors — health, banking, housing, transport, energy and even the Internet.
Obama has also supercharged immigration, delivering roughly 10 million new workers and consumers into the economy as immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers.That inflow is likely large because he’s increased the inflow of illegal immigration and has invited 400,000 unskilled and welfare-dependent Central American migrants to settle in the United States.
That adds up to a 3 percent population increase to a nation of of 309 million in 2009. Those new people, both legal and illegal, do grow the economy slightly — as Obama promised — but they also reduce average wages, slow productivity growth and will consume trillions in welfare spending as they grow old.
Obama has also boosted the annual inflow of guest-workers from roughly 700,000 per year to roughly 800,000 per year. These wage-cutting white-collar and blue-collar temporary workers do lower the salaries of designers, academics, technologists, scientists, medical experts and blue-collar workers, while somewhat enlarging the overall GNP.
Despite these massive and costly injections into the economy, Obama still managed only 13 percent economic growth, not the historical average of 21 percent or his promise of 31 percent.