Economy

Holiday Shopping Data Illustrate Success of Trump’s Policies and Democrats’ Difficult Road

Featured image The Wall Street Journal reports on holiday shopping: Fueled by high consumer confidence and a robust job market, U.S. retail sales in the holiday period rose at their best pace since 2011, according to MastercardSpendingPulse, which tracks both online and in-store spending. Sales, excluding automobiles, rose 4.9% from Nov. 1 through Christmas Eve, compared with a 3.7% gain in the same period last year. *** Unlike in past years, when »

What if Americans end up really liking the tax cuts?

Featured image As the Senate was about to pass the tax reform bill earlier this week, protesters interrupted the proceedings with chants like “Kill the bill, don’t kill us.” The protests were so loud that Vice President Pence had to stop the process a few times. Protesters singled out Sen. Jeff Flake, whom they hoped would vote “no.” A protester yelled: “Have you no decency, have you no shame?” This was probably »

Those greedy, churlish capitalists are foiling Democrats again

Featured image Remember a few years ago when Democrats and the mainstream media were moaning about how businesses were hoarding cash and buying back stock instead of investing? The economy had recovered and business was starting to boom, we were told. Yet, corporations weren’t expanding and/or investing, and this was preventing the Obama recovery from being glorious. Why were corporations being so churlish? For most on the left and in the mainstream »

Some Charts to Ponder

Featured image The economy is looking pretty strong these days. The good people at the Wall Street Journal‘s Daily Shot offer up a couple of interesting charts showing that the ratio of job openings to unemployed workers is at a level not seen in a very long time, which might indicate that we’ll soon see upward movement in wages. On the other hand, one reason that the official unemployment rate is so low »

Tax Cuts and Liberal Hysteria

Featured image Power Line is pleased to welcome Kurt Eichenwald to its readership, though should I be worried or pleased that our most mild of provocations indicates that he keeps a cardiologist fully and anxiously employed? All it took was a nod to this overwrought tweet to provoke a tantrum: One hardly expects an elite journalist to lose all perspective in the manner of a Hollywood star like Patton Oswalt, who offered »

Taxing Times, and That Ol’-Timey Liberal Religion

Featured image I was on the road all this past week with a hectic itinerary on both coasts, so I wasn’t paying especially close attention to the news. Did I miss anything? Ah yes—I see Democrats are in a rage that Republicans have taken Nancy Pelosi’s advice to pass a bill to find out what is in it with the tax reform bill. They’re acting as though Republicans, in wheeling and dealing »

Why People Hate Big Business

Featured image I missed this story several days ago about General Electric’s former CEO Jeff Immelt, who always spouted the party line about climate change and the “renewable energy” racket: For much of Jeff Immelt’s 16-year run atop one of the world’s largest conglomerates, an empty business jet followed his GE-owned plane on some trips to destinations around the world, according to people familiar with the matter. The two jets sometimes parked »

The Crash, 30 Years Later

Featured image Hard to believe it has been 30 years since the crash of 1987. It didn’t come entirely out of the blue. Here’s a look back at it, drawn from chapter 13 of my second Age of Reagan books: Looking back afterwards, the harbingers of a stock market breakdown become easier to make out. The stock market could not maintain its level in the face of rising interest rates and extreme »

How Obama holdovers are sowing the seeds for another subprime collapse

Featured image Paul Sperry, writing in the New York Post, warns that “a pair of top Obama-appointed bank regulators still serving in the Trump administration could spark another mortgage meltdown by lowering credit standards and encouraging risky lending practices.” Sperry is the author of The Great American Bank Robbery: The Unauthorized Report About What Really Caused the Great Recession. The two Obama officials are Mel Watt, who is serving a special five-year »

A middle class revival

Featured image This column by Robert Samuelson is called “The Quiet Comeback of the Middle Class.” It presents a picture of contemporary America at variance from the narrative of both the left and the Trumpians, at least in their 2016 incarnation. Samuelson cites a Gallup poll from June of this year in which 62 percent of Americans said they are in the middle or upper middle class, while only 36 percent classified »

About Trump’s “re-election” ad

Featured image John wrote about and posted what he calls Trump’s first re-election ad. The ad touts the record level stock market and the unusually low unemployment numbers. It doesn’t cite any legislative victories or foreign policy accomplishments. Nor could it. As a re-election pitch, current stock market prices and employment numbers couldn’t be less relevant. The relevant numbers will be the ones in 2020, when Trump faces the voters. At that »

Stocks Shatter Records, But DON’T GIVE TRUMP CREDIT!

Featured image The Associated Press has devoted itself to helping the Democratic Party bring down President Trump. The AP’s effort consists mostly of producing multiple negative articles about Trump and his administration every day; these are picked up by hundreds or thousands of newspapers around the country. But that isn’t all: the AP also conducts a rear-guard action, trying to defuse any positive news about Trump and his administration. Today’s AP story, »

Trump Tells The Truth About Economy, AP Tries to Obfuscate

Featured image The Associated Press purports to fact-check President Trump on just about a daily basis, but anyone who pays attention knows the AP is just pushing the Democratic Party’s line. Today’s “fact check” is a good example: The Latest: Trump’s claims about economy not accurate. Only if you read the article, you find that Trump’s statements were indeed correct: President Donald Trump’s tweet Monday about economic progress under his administration isn’t »

Jamie Dimon for President?

Featured image You may have heard the rant about Washington’s unseriousness about economic growth that JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon delivered on an earnings call the other day. In case you missed it, here it is (with some key bits marked in bold): Since the Great Recession, which is now 8 years old, we’ve been growing at 1.5 to 2 percent in spite of stupidity and political gridlock. Because the American business »

Millions of Liberal Brain Cells Have Died

Featured image I’ve commented before on the current Democratic talking point that “millions will die” if the Senate health care reform proposal is enacted, noting that I had missed this enormous mortality that must have been occurring just a few years ago before Obamacare was passed. There is actually fairly robust econometric literature that establishes the proposition that “wealthier is healthier,” and hence that economic growth is the best general policy for »

Seattle Discovers Gravity Is Not Socially Constructed

Featured image Well not quite gravity, but close enough for post-modernist work. You know how liberals like to attach taxes on cigarettes so we’ll buy fewer of them, and on alcohol so we’ll drink less, etc? Funny, though, how the basic lesson of supply and demand and price sensitivity falls by the wayside when it comes to the minimum wage. We’ve commented on this invincible ignorance repeatedly (such as here, here, here, »

The Economy: Don’t Look Now But. . .

Featured image The stock market closed today at record highs, and today’s jobs report, though weak, showed steady progress (especially in mining—one of those sectors Trump had promised to improve). But I wonder if we might be seeing some early signs of trouble.  The good folks who produce the copious charts for the Wall Street Journal‘s Daily Shot note that a housing bubble may be reforming as housing sales suddenly show a »