Just The Numbers

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  1. Willowarbor profile image60
    Willowarborposted 10 months ago

    The economy is big, complex and difficult for most people to understand. In reality, the president may not have as much control over the economy as people tend to think. The Federal Reserve, for instance, has a much more direct influence over how well the economy does.

    I've read a lot of inflammatory statements here and a lot of blame placed on Biden the day he walked into office in terms of blaming him for the economy.  There can sometimes be too much emotion and too much hyperbole.
    In reality, how does Biden's  economy (thus far) stack up to every president since 1963?

    I think there are some interesting and surprising facts here. I hope everyone will take a look and make an unbiased evaluation strictly by the numbers.

    https://www.gobankingrates.com/money/ec … n-johnson/

    1. wilderness profile image95
      wildernessposted 10 months agoin reply to this

      "And during times of crisis, the president can expedite relief that may significantly lessen the long-term economic damage that may otherwise have lingered."

      This is the biggest problem Biden's economy has; his massive spending/giveaway programs are the biggest single reason for our inflation.  An inflation rate that is not calculated as it was for many of those past presidents; instead it has been adjusted to provide a more "accurate" figure, a figure that that represents only a part of the inflation people are actually experiencing.

      So yes, the economy is not bad, but neither is it good and the continuing inflation (badly understated) is hurting us all to a degree we haven't seen in many years.

      1. Willowarbor profile image60
        Willowarborposted 10 months agoin reply to this

        There are many Economists that believe Biden’s American Rescue Plan may have exacerbated inflation but did not create it.  Inflation hovered around 2% for most Trump's presidency, except for the start of the pandemic. Let's not less gloss over the fact that the rate was that low not because of economic strength, but rather widespread economic distress (pandemic shutdowns, and demand for goods and services plummeted ).

        I think that many need to remember, inflation is often the byproduct of a hot economy, plentiful jobs and shoppers’ spending freely.  Inflation is always that balance between employment, cost of goods and their impact on inflation. 
        We need to acknowledge at some point that the economy is going to have to slow and unemployment is going to have to rise to begin to take some of this extra inflation out of the system. It's a tightrope for any administration because they'll be blamed for high unemployment on the other end.

        1. DrMark1961 profile image95
          DrMark1961posted 10 months agoin reply to this

          You mean like the hot economy, plentiful jobs, and free spending during the Clinton era? Why didnt it cause inflation then but then it did so under Biden?
          This graph sums it up. https://www.statista.com/statistics/191 … ince-1990/

          1. Willowarbor profile image60
            Willowarborposted 10 months agoin reply to this

            Bill Clinton (1993-2001)
            GDP growth: 0.3%
            Unemployment rate: 4.2%
            Inflation rate: 3.7%

            Joe Biden (2021-Present)
            GDP growth: 2.6%
            Unemployment rate: 3.5%
            Inflation rate: 3.2% (most current number)

            1. DrMark1961 profile image95
              DrMark1961posted 10 months agoin reply to this

              Wow, what a fake cherry-picked number. Are you too embarrassed to include the actual inflation rate of the time he has been in office?
              Do you really think wages have risen to cover the inflation that has taken place since he took office?

              1. Willowarbor profile image60
                Willowarborposted 10 months agoin reply to this

                The link originally provided gives all of the information on the numbers from Presidents since 1963.  The numbers reflect the end of each president's term and Biden's thus far.
                Please don't assume anything about my embarrassment. I have none.. Honestly this forum is really becoming quite uncivil. I think my posts have been quite clear

                Leading economists like Jason Furman, Justin Wolfers, and Arin Dube have all noted that real average hourly earnings are higher now than they were in January or February of 2020, the baseline that is widely accepted as representing the pre-pandemic norm.

                1. DrMark1961 profile image95
                  DrMark1961posted 10 months agoin reply to this

                  No one has been uncivil here. If you start a thread making comments about how everything is fine, when most people in the US are struggling to keep ahead because of the inflation that has taken place under the current president, there are going to be comments you do not agree with.

                  Real average hourly earnings are NOT higher now.

                  1. My Esoteric profile image82
                    My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

                    It's NOT???

                    "Pay is finally rising faster than consumer prices, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Average hourly pay has grown at an annual rate of 4.4% for the last three months, topping the Consumer Price Index, which rose at rate of 3% in June and 4% in May."

                    https://www.cbsnews.com/news/for-the-fi … 0in%20May.

              2. wilderness profile image95
                wildernessposted 10 months agoin reply to this

                Of course they haven't.  But first you take out food and energy costs (and the inflation from that), then you take out any items in the CPI "basket" that people no longer buy because they are too expensive now and then you calculate inflation based on no food, no energy and lower standard of living.  Lo and Behold!  It costs only 3% more to live this year than last year!  And it probably does as long as you don't eat, don't drive, don't heat or cool your home and accept that lower standard of living.

                1. My Esoteric profile image82
                  My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

                  Are you saying that Willowarbor personally took out those items? Actually, the 3.2% figure is the CPI-U, which includes energy and food.  Why do you keep bringing up something that is not true?

                  1. Sharlee01 profile image88
                    Sharlee01posted 10 months agoin reply to this

                    The inflation rate does not calculate in costs of food or energy. Willow's stats were correct... However

                    "Understanding Core Inflation
                    Core inflation is the change in the costs of goods and services but does not include those from the food and energy sectors. Food and energy prices are exempt from this calculation because their prices can be too volatile or fluctuate wildly.
                    https://www.investopedia.com/terms/c/co … %20wildly.

                    Dan's made a great point.

              3. My Esoteric profile image82
                My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

                Did she SAY "wages have risen to cover the inflation that has taken place since he took office?"  - I don't think so.  If she didn't, then why are you making that up?

                Why are you insulting her?  He is in office NOW and inflation is 3.2%.  What she didn't say is that Biden brought inflation down from 9.5% to 3.2%,  What you didn't say is that Biden did not cause inflation in the first place.  How come?

          2. My Esoteric profile image82
            My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

            You are comparing baseballs with apples.

            1. DrMark1961 profile image95
              DrMark1961posted 10 months agoin reply to this

              No, you are not correct as this person made a comment that the inflation was caused by the hot economy, not that is was caused by the increased government spending under the Biden administration.

              1. My Esoteric profile image82
                My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

                I was responding to your comment which said - "You mean like the hot economy, plentiful jobs, and free spending during the Clinton era? Why didnt it cause inflation then but then it did so under Biden?"

        2. wilderness profile image95
          wildernessposted 10 months agoin reply to this

          "Inflation is always that balance between employment, cost of goods and their impact on inflation. "

          Inflation is the result of the difference between demand and supply.  When demand rises above supply prices increase and when prices increase beyond that of a few products we get inflation at the national level.

          When Biden increased demand with give away money, while at the same time decreasing supply with shut downs the result was inevitable.  Demand went up from all the "free" money, supply fell from shutting down production and delivery, and inflation went through the roof. 

          It wasn't because the economy was slow, it wasn't from unemployment cutting demand.  It was because demand went up while supply went down - both were a direct result of Biden's policies during the pandemic.  The pandemic is over, the giveaways gone and supply is back to near normal...and inflation is falling.  Still not to previous levels, but falling.

          1. Kathleen Cochran profile image75
            Kathleen Cochranposted 10 months agoin reply to this

            "Over the last couple years, the world has experienced the highest levels of inflation in more than four decades. There are multiple sources of economic disruption that have likely contributed to this inflation, most notably pandemic shutdowns and reopenings and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. "
            The Roosevelt Institute

            (None of that is President Biden's doing.)

            1. wilderness profile image95
              wildernessposted 10 months agoin reply to this

              Biden didn't keep the country closed?  Didn't demand that business shutter their doors?  Didn't pay people to stay off work even when they could have returned to production?

              I understand he did it in a misguided effort to keep the country safe, but he did it without counting the cost.  And we are still paying that cost.

              1. My Esoteric profile image82
                My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

                Sorry, your facts are wrong.  Trump did all those things.  And if Biden kept the economy closed (he didn't) then how did he add 9+ million jobs?

                WHAT "I understand he did it in a misguided effort to keep the country safe, but he did it without counting the cost." SAYS is that because it cost too much (in your opinion) then Biden should not have kept the country safe.  Interesting.

          2. My Esoteric profile image82
            My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

            Actually, you are right and wrong.  Yes, inflation is ultimately caused by one of two things: printing too much money (rare) and Demand outstripping Supply.

            You are wrong in blaming Biden for it. Blame Trump, if you are going to blame anybody (which you shouldn't).  When Trump began opening up the economy, demand started to rise fast. It continued to rise when Biden kept opening the economy.

            Because pandemic totally disrupted the supply chains (and long ago decision to use just-in-time logistics which all but eliminated inventories) and therefore they could not keep up with demand.  China exasperated the problem by keeping their economy shutdown which cut of their source of supply.

            The solution you are looking for then, is for either Trump or Biden to cause a recession to drive down demand to a level that supply can keep up.  But if they did that, you would be complaining about that instead.

        3. My Esoteric profile image82
          My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

          I'll go one step further a state that no economist without an agenda has said that the American Rescue Plan "caused" inflation.  Studies now show it had a small, temporary impact on inflation.

          Also, all economists that don't have an agenda use the same set of CPI indices; the generally reported CPI-U, the core CPI, and the Chained CPI.  Which one they use depends on the topic. 

          Yes, there are a very few economists who think the chained CPI is used because the gov't wants to report a lower inflation rate.  There are also a few others who think the CPI-U is the better measure than chained but that the government is NOT manipulating the inflation rates.  The VAST majority of economists thint that how the BLS uses and reports the CPI is the best available at the time.

    2. Sharlee01 profile image88
      Sharlee01posted 10 months agoin reply to this

      The numbers do not in any fashion reflect what Americans are now forced to spend.  The numbers do in no respect give comfort to any Americans who are spending so much more to live, many are living on savings and credit cards.

      Source of comment    https://www.bankrate.com/finance/credit … on%20cash.
      U.S. credit card debt reaches all-time high, exceeds $1 trillion
      "Key takeaways. U.S. credit card debt increased by $45 billion from Q1 2023 to Q2 2023 leading to a new all-time high. Nearly 50% of cardholders carry debt from month-to-month, up from 39% in 2021. Rising figure shows a strong consumer economy and lower reliance on cash."

      Look here not there...

      1. Willowarbor profile image60
        Willowarborposted 10 months agoin reply to this

        The numbers reflect actual stats in the areas listed from each president since 63.   Many are similar.  Are you saying the numbers aren't inaccurate interpretation of what they propose to represent? Is there an issue with the calculation? I presented an analysis, nothing more nothing less.
        I don't understand the look here not there" comment.
        If you would like to contest the validity of the numbers, we certainly can do that.

        In terms of credit cards, I really hadn't commented on that at all but since you brought it up..

        "While record-high credit card debt sounds alarming, Rossman carefully notes that the new $1.03 trillion figure doesn’t necessarily mean all consumers are in trouble.

        “Just over half of cardholders avoid interest by paying in full each month, so credit cards are working for them, in terms of rewards and buyer protections,” says Rossman. “Rising credit card balances are also good for the economy in the sense that consumer spending powers about 70% of economic growth. Credit card balances are also rising in part due to population growth and because cash usage continues to decline.”

        From The source you quoted.

        1. Sharlee01 profile image88
          Sharlee01posted 10 months agoin reply to this

          I  in no respect argue with the numbers... Just pointed out Americans are financially being hurt. It's that simple in my view.

          "Are people falling behind on credit cards?
          More Americans are failing to make payments on their credit cards and auto loans, another sign of rising financial pressure on consumers. New credit card and auto loan delinquencies have now surpassed pre-Covid levels, according to a Wednesday report issued by Moody's Investors Service.Aug 10, 2023"  https://www.cnn.com/2023/08/10/economy/ … 20Service.

          "Rising credit card balances are also good for the economy in the sense that consumer spending powers about 70% of economic growth. Credit card balances are also rising in part due to population growth and because cash usage continues to decline.”

          That statement is illogical. Many are living on credit cards and unable to pay them, and can't meet the payments.
          https://finance.yahoo.com/news/a-troubl … 09041.html

          1. Willowarbor profile image60
            Willowarborposted 10 months agoin reply to this

            The author made the distinction between living on credit and using credit instead of cash
            Meaning you don't keep a balance.  Also, I find logic in the statement that the population has grown and therefore the number of people with credit cards has grown. 
            According to the Fed, the 30-day delinquency rate (or the percentage of total outstanding credit card balances currently at least 30 days overdue) rose from 2.25% to 2.43% in the first quarter of 2023.  Again, there has to be a distinction made between those who carry balances and those who do not because we are sort of in a cashless age. I am not certain if there are statistics of those who "live on credit" versus those who use a card in lieu of cash and pay it off immediately.
            Actually I see it in the link that 49% of Americans pay their credit bill in full.

            1. My Esoteric profile image82
              My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

              I, for one, keep a balance, mainly because I am too lazy to pay off the cards each month.  Every so often, I get busy and clear all the balances, but then rack it up again.  I wonder how many people are as lazy as I am when it comes to paying off credit cards.

              Here is an article on the state of consumer debt.  Other than the hyperbolic title to catch your attention, the presentation seems reasonable.

              One take-away, if you look closely, is that young people don't manage their money well (as I watch my daughter-in-law and her family always being in financial straights even though their combined income approaches $100,000 a year) while us Boomers do.

              https://finance.yahoo.com/news/jaw-drop … 0expenses.

          2. My Esoteric profile image82
            My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

            As I pointed out on another forum, historically speaking Americans are being more resistant to running up credit debt today, than in past years.

          3. My Esoteric profile image82
            My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

            Financially being hurt?.  How is that different from most periods throughout American history?  Are you saying that the current situation is unique to Biden and that under all other presidents they haven't been financially hurt?  Fair is fair, after all.

            1. Sharlee01 profile image88
              Sharlee01posted 10 months agoin reply to this

              Americans are using credit at a record level. Unable to pay their monthly bills or the cost of food.  Hopefully, all this will hit the fan as it did in 2208, just in time 2024 election.  Hey, Bide has the worst karma of anyone I have ever seen.

              1. My Esoteric profile image82
                My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

                And how is that unusual?

                I guess I can't disagree about the Karma thing, the right-wing propaganda machine makes sure of that.

                1. Sharlee01 profile image88
                  Sharlee01posted 10 months agoin reply to this

                  Due to the historic amounts being charged ... All on Biden's time
                  https://www.cnn.com/2023/08/08/economy/ … index.html

                  As I said, I hope this all hits the fan in a timely fashion before the
                  2024 election. People vote with their pocketbooks.  And Biden has broken the backs of the poor and middle class.  This should work out well fo the GOP.

                  1. My Esoteric profile image82
                    My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

                    The GOP turns off most Americans with their hateful, divisive, rhetoric and the laws they have passed to take away freedoms from women and the LGBTQ+ community, and making it harder for everyone to vote (including their own). Their book banning and teaching revisionists history about America have really pissed of parents.

                    Can you imagine, now a GOP presidential candidate wants to deport American-born children and another still wants to start ripping babies out of their families arms again as a method to stop them from coming to America.

                    I am not worried about the economy, it will end up helping him when people figure out they are doing OK.

                2. Sharlee01 profile image88
                  Sharlee01posted 10 months agoin reply to this

                  He creates his own issues... As I mentioned to Cred early in Biden's presidency, there was potential for him to be one of the best if he had simply gone with the flow, operated quietly, and focused on uniting the nation. Unfortunately, he opted for a confrontational approach, and in my opinion, he's suffered the consequences of his questionable decisions. He had the chance to be widely respected, and our nation could have been on a path to healing and prosperity.

                  He lit the match... LOL

                  Thank God the people have finally taken notice. His polls get worse and worse.

                  1. My Esoteric profile image82
                    My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

                    To bad Trump didn't follow your advice for Biden.  Instead, he did everything he could to destroy this country.

        2. My Esoteric profile image82
          My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

          That to.

      2. My Esoteric profile image82
        My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

        History shows that Americans have ALWAYS lived on credit cards.  And except for one or two times, Americans have never saved, even though they could.

        U.S. credit debt has decreased in 2023.

        After dividing by population and accounting for inflation, the CURRENT consumer debt is $13,039.46 per person  At the end of 2022, it was $13,136.87 per person, a 0.744% Decrease.

        https://www.federalreserve.gov/releases … evels.html (you will have to do the math like I did.)

        Also, from historical perspective, Americans, in terms of the growth of consumer debt (of which credit card debt is a subset), Americans are doing better than most periods in the past.

        1. Sharlee01 profile image88
          Sharlee01posted 10 months agoin reply to this

          My point many more citizens have turned to credit to live, due to having no other means to pay for food, energy, as well as housing. This is a huge problem, and will soon hit the fan --- as it did in 2007. Hopefully if hits the fan before the 2024 election.

          1. My Esoteric profile image82
            My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

            And my point is that that is not unusual.  It has ALWAYS been a huge problem in America.  And what does Bush's recession have to do with this?

            1. Sharlee01 profile image88
              Sharlee01posted 10 months agoin reply to this

              LOL -- and just look who We the people elected...   We chose to flip to the Dems.  People look for change when an administration fails to keep cash in their pockets.

              1. My Esoteric profile image82
                My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

                Well, apparently no administrations have lived up to that standard, so why are you just picking on Biden?

                1. Sharlee01 profile image88
                  Sharlee01posted 10 months agoin reply to this

                  We just need to keep trying until we get it right.

    3. My Esoteric profile image82
      My Esotericposted 10 months agoin reply to this

      I took your stats and did a little arithmetic on it.  Using averages, but no weights, I found that:

      Democratic Presidents:

      GDP Growth: 2.22%
      Unemployment Rate: 4.64%
      Inflation: 5.48% (Carter drove the number up)
      Poverty Rate: 12.78%
      Real Disposable Income per Capita: $32,570.80 (2012 chained $)

      Republican Presidents:

      GDP Growth: 1.5%
      Unemployment Rate: 6.27%
      Inflation: 4.25% (influenced by deflation during the Bush II recession)
      Poverty Rate: 12.77%
      Real Disposable Income per Capita: $30,261.83 (2012 chained $)

      * I omitted the "Disposable income per capita (adjusted for inflation)" because it is just the "Real Disposable Income per Capita" in terms of 2022$

      * I could have weighted the calculations by time in office, but it wouldn't have changed the outcome very much.

      I was blown away that Clinton only had a 0.3% GDP growth but it looks like the 2021 recession wiped out all the previous growth.

      Real Disposable Income boomed between Carter and Reagan; Bush I and Clinton; Bush II and Obama; and Obama and Trump.  It has fallen back so far under Biden, but he has only had 3 years while the others had 8.  You won't be able to draw a fair comparison until after Biden's next term is over.

      So, what are the take-aways?
      * Democrats had better economic growth
      * Democrats had lower unemployment
      * Republicans did better on inflation although that number is perturbed by both the Carter and Bush II presidencies
      * Poverty rates are the same under either administration
      * Democrats had higher Real Disposable Income.

 
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