“If it bleeds it leads” is how the old saying concerning media attention goes. And with the anti-Trump mob smelling blood in the water all we hear is “IMPEACH!! IMPEACH!!! IMPEACH!!!!” as if repeating this mantra over and over will make their dream of reversing the results of the 20916 election come true. And because of this obsessive compulsion to control the narrative the good news concerning America’s economy is buried below the fold on page 57 of the classifieds.
However, as is always the case eventually the truth comes out. President Trump, the blue collar billionaire, who sacrificed living the dream to living in a fish bowl filled with sharks, continues to work with little fanfare and less credit to improve the lives of American citizens.
As an example let’s look at the wages of American workers. According to the Pew Research Center as of 2018, “despite some ups and downs over the past several decades, today’s real average wage (that is, the wage after accounting for inflation) has about the same purchasing power it did 40 years ago.” Of course this report in 2018 was chronicling the findings from 2017 as the nation began to stir after years of the Bush-Clinton-Bush-Obama managed decline model.
Even as the relentless and furious attempt to reverse the 2016 election continues the positive changes initiated by President Trump are fighting through a log jam of phony charges and kangaroo hearings to benefit the citizens of our great republic. Today it’s morning again in America as the Trump Bump gathers steam bringing concrete benefits all of us.
On July 24th the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) published its annual revisions to personal income data. This download of data included a pleasant surprise. There was a notable increase in disposable income and employee compensation.
These revisions showed employee compensation rising 4.5% in 2017 and 5% in 2018—some $4.4 billion and $87.1 billion more than previously reported. The trend has continued into 2019, with compensation increasing $378 billion or 3.4% in the first six months alone. Wages and salaries were revised upward to 5.3% from 3.6% in May year over year. And in June wages and salaries grew at an annual rate of 5.5%, which is a rocking 4.1% after adjusting for inflation.
The BEA also revised overall personal income up by 1.7% for 2017 and 2018 and transfer receipts down 0.7%. What does this mean? It shows that Americans are earning more and relying less on government.
As an example of Americans becoming more self-reliant we can look at the precipitous decline in the number of people who require food stamps to maintain a healthy diet. According to Fox News, “The latest intel from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) affirms that the amount of food stamp beneficiaries reached 40,083,954 in March 2018. The foregoing number is the lowest since February 2010. Experts have moreover attributed the decline to crackdowns on fraud within the food stamp program, coupled with President Trump’s economic improvements.”
In addition the BEA report also offered a revision in the personal savings rate. The government’s estimates were increased by $217 billion for the first two years of the Trump administration and are now $1.3 trillion, which means Americans are saving more of their earnings.
The BEA report continued uncovering more positive information concerning savings. It revised the personal savings rate upward to 8.1% from 6.1% in May, which is much higher than the roughly 5% before the last two recessions. This should make the current economic expansion more sustainable since consumption isn’t based on increased household debt consumer spending is increasing as wage growth grows due to a tight labor market.
Just think for a moment about how the liberal media endorsed President Obama’s “New Normal” as the reason worker incomes weren’t growing faster during the previous administration. Then came Trump: and today employee compensation has increased by $150 billion. That is more in the first six months of 2019 than in all of 2016. Let this comparison sink in. It is even more pronounced when we look at the first two years of the Trump Presidency: compensation increased 42% more since Trump’s inauguration than in 2015 and 2016 combined. This completely discredits the claim that the economy is merely continuing the same trajectory since 2017.
This all flows as naturally as water over a cliff from President Trump’s two pronged plan to revitalize America.
First there is the on-going effort to scrap the economic strangulation of regulation. According to the Washington Examiner, “Deregulation explodes under Trump, 13 regulations killed for every new one, $33B saved.” This unleashes the entrepreneurial spirits of Americans. Just think about the fact that after decades of promising energy independence while restricting where and how we could drill for oil or dig for coal after just three years of Trump’s “Drill Baby Drill” policies and the removal of oppressive regulations we’ve become the largest producer of energy in the world.
Secondly there is Trump’s tax reform. This has inspired businesses to invest in new facilities and equipment. In the long run this investment will lead to higher worker productivity and wages.
And we are endlessly bombarded with the story that the profits of the 1% are far out pacing the financial benefits of the 99. This doesn’t seem to match a statement found in the Wall Street Journal, “Corporate after-tax profits increased by about $220 billion between 2016 and 2018 while employee compensation swelled nearly $1 trillion. Corporate profits declined 2.9% in the first quarter of 2019 even as wages grew at an annual rate of 10.1%. This sure sounds like an economy that is benefiting the 99%.”
Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion. He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com © 2019 Contact Dr. Owens [email protected] Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens or visit Dr. Owens Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens