Economy: Median household income is up more than 4%, the economy is growing fast, optimism is at decades long highs. Not that you’d know it, since the press is too busy trying to drive President Trump from office.
Inflation-adjusted median household incomes in July hit $62,450 according to the latest release from Sentier Research. That’s the highest level since Sentier started tracking this more than 18 years ago. And if you combine Sentier’s numbers with annual Census data, median household income is at all-time highs.
More interesting is the fact that median household income has shot up more than 4% in the 19 months since Trump took office. It had been flat over the previous year and a half. Over the course of President Obama’s entire eight years in office, median household income climbed a mere 0.3%, Sentier data show.
Overall economic growth is accelerating as well, after years of Obama-induced stagnation. On Wednesday, the Commerce Department boosted its estimate of Second Quarter growth to 4.2%. That means average growth for first half of the year was above 3%. And if it continues strong in the third quarter — as appears to be the case — chances are we will see growth for the entire year at or above 3%. That would be the first time since 2005.
This, too, is a sharp turnaround that just happens to coincide with the Trump presidency. In Obama’s last year in office, GDP growth was an anemic 1.6%. The growth rate dropped in each of the last two quarters of that year. And economists were everywhere telling the public that 2% was the best we could do.
Perhaps that’s why polls are showing the public’s mood better than it’s been in many years. Examples:
- The IBD/TIPP Economic Optimism Index surged to a 14-year high in August. (The September reading comes out next week.) The IBD/TIPP poll also found that Americans are more satisfied with the direction of the country than they’ve been since 2005.
- The Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index just reached an 18-year high at 133.4. The month before Trump won the election in November 2016, it was 98.6.
- The Conference Board also reports that job satisfaction is the highest it’s been since 2005.
- A survey by Express Employment finds that blue collar workers are more upbeat about the direction of the economy than the general public.
Whatever one’s view of Trump, this is undeniably good news. After years of “unexpectedly” underperforming growth, the economy is giving every indication that it is returning to its vigorous norm.
But instead of heralding this news, the mainstream press either ignores, downplays or tries to explain it away. As we noted in this space recently, The New York Times and others keep trying to claim that the current boom was simply the continuation of growth set in motion during the Obama years.
There’s a simple reason for this. The press is singularly fixated on bringing down Trump at all costs. Since good economic news will help Trump, it must be overlooked.