Sorry Donald: The Economy Is About the Same as Usual

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Donald Trump is whining again:

The #FakeNews MSM doesn’t report the great economic news since Election Day. #DOW up 16%. #NASDAQ up 19.5%. Drilling & energy sector way up. Regulations way down. 600,000+ new jobs added. Unemployment down to 4.3%. Business and economic enthusiasm way up- record levels!

Let’s check this out. The Dow is definitely up, but the rest is a little dicier. First up is “Drilling & energy sector way up.” If Trump is talking about energy stocks, he’s wrong: the S&P 500 Energy Sector has been dropping all year and is well below its Election Day level. The real world looks pretty flat too:

Next up: “Regulations way down.” How do you even measure this? Congress has killed off about a dozen Obama regs that took effect a few months ago, but that’s a drop in the ocean. And I assume that routine rulemaking has continued in the meantime. I think it’s safe to say that federal regulations aren’t “way down,” but beyond that there’s no good way to evaluate this so early in Trump’s term.

Next up: “600,000+ new jobs added.” True enough. But not so impressive compared to Obama’s second term:

Next up: “Unemployment down to 4.3%.” That’s true. But once again, nothing to brag about compared to the trendline Trump inherited:

Next up: “Business and economic enthusiasm way up- record levels!” Consumer sentiment is pretty easy to measure. If we give Trump credit for everything since Election Day, he produced a nice jump in December, but nothing much since then:

As for business sentiment, I’m not sure how to measure it. How about looking at business fixed investment in equipment? That should provide a decent idea of how optimistic businesses are feeling right now. Here it is:

Basically, both the stock market and consumer sentiment got a bit of a kick from Trump’s election but have been pretty flat since then. All the other stuff is either normal or a bit lower than Obama’s record. For the last several years the economy has been good but not great. It still is.

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Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

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