Economy Sets a Record, but Trump Isn't Getting Much of a Boost from It

Economy Sets a Record, but Trump Isn't Getting Much of a Boost from It


The recovery from the Great Recession turned 10 years old on Monday, making it the longest period of economic expansion in modern U.S. history. Unemployment has fallen from 10% in October 2009 to 3.6% as of last month. Gross domestic product has grown in a solid if unspectacular fashion, climbing from $15.2 trillion in 2009 to nearly $18.6 trillion last year.

But as it enters its 121st month, the growth streak is “easily the least celebrated economic recovery in decades,” writes Christopher Rugaber of the Associated Press.

Income growth has been weak, and the richest Americans now hold a larger share of the country’s wealth than they did before the financial crisis in 2007, Rugaber says.

So while Americans now rate the economy as solid, they give President Trump mixed reviews for his handling of it, according to a new poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.

Some key data from the poll:

  • 63% of Americans describe the economy as good, up from 53% in January.
  • 47% approve of Trump handling of the economy, while 51% disapprove
  • Just 26% say that Trump’s tariffs help the economy, down from 40% in August 2018.
  • Just 17% say they got a tax cut in 2018, while a third say their federal taxes increased and 31% say their taxes stayed the same. (Republicans are more likely than Democrats to say their taxes decreased, 25% to 10%.)

Those tax cut numbers stand in sharp contrast to analyses that have shown that most households paid less in federal taxes last year as a result of the 2017 GOP tax overhaul. “This suggests the tax cuts may have been too modest to notice or were eaten up by daily expenses, or that people were disappointed with their refunds,” the AP’s Josh Boak and Hannah Fingerhut write.

The AP-NORC poll of 1,116 adults was conducted June 13 to 17. It has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.