johnson118_SpencerPlattGettyImages_traderreflectiondata Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Economic Growth and the US Presidential Election

Slowing US economic growth poses a problem for President Donald Trump, who promised repeatedly that growth would accelerate under his administration and always remain above 3% per year. But will the Democrats prove capable of coalescing around the kind of policies that would really make a difference?

WASHINGTON, DC – Economic growth in the United States was just 2.5% in 2018 and, according to the latest “advance” estimate, may have slowed to only 2.1% in the second quarter of 2019. The economy is growing at roughly the same pace as it did during Barack Obama’s second term as president (GDP growth was 2.5% in 2014 and 2.9% in 2015, before slowing to 1.6% in 2016 – perhaps related to election-induced uncertainty).

Such growth rates pose a problem for President Donald Trump, who promised repeatedly that economic growth would accelerate under his administration and always remain above 3% per year. It is therefore an opportunity for the Democratic presidential contenders. But will the Democrats prove capable of coalescing around the kind of policies that would really make a difference?

The problem to be solved, of course, is not only – or even especially – the headline growth numbers. Several profound imbalances have emerged in the structure of the US economy.

We hope you're enjoying Project Syndicate.

To continue reading and receive unfettered access to all content, subscribe now.

Subscribe

or

Unlock additional commentaries for FREE by registering.

Register

https://prosyn.org/EzePYqv