The economy grew at an improved, inflation-adjusted 2.6 percent annualized in the second quarter, the Bureau of Economic Analysis reports. That is up from 1.2 percent in the first quarter.
While slightly better, it is still nowhere near 3 percent annualized — not seen since 2005 — a level White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) director Mick Mulvaney promised would be restored in an oped to the Wall Street Journal on July 12, “Introducing Maga-nomics.”
“For merely suggesting that we can get back to that level, the administration has been criticized as unrealistic. That’s fine with us. We heard the same pessimism 40 years ago, when the country was mired in ‘stagflation’ and ‘malaise.’ But Ronald Reagan dared to challenge that thinking and steered us to a boom that many people thought unachievable,” Mulvaney wrote.
To put these numbers in perspective, to get to 3 percent growth for 2017 will now require more than 4 percent inflation-adjusted growth the remaining two quarters.
To be fair, the Trump budget submitted by OMB and Mulvaney soberly does not see the U.S. returning to 3 percent until 2021. So, how does Mulvaney and the White House economic team see this much-needed growth coming back to the U.S.?
For starters, Americans need to get back to work. As Mulvaney sagely notes: “Growth also depends on the size of the workforce. Although the labor pool is aging, we are also seeing people who could be working but are staying home. We badly need them to go back to work. We believe that most want to do this but simply lack the opportunity.”
And to get there, Mulvaney cites several planks of the Trump economic agenda,…
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