While the Biden administration continues to congratulate itself for the 'strongest job creation economy in modern times' (which isn't difficult when your y/y baseline was caused by economy-killing lockdowns), most people aren't buying it.
In fact, as people face $100 tanks of gas and skyrocketing grocery prices, the Economic Optimism Index poll from IBD/TIPP plunged 9.5% in May, dropping to 41.2 – which, as Issues & Insights' editorial board notes, puts it firmly in the pessimism zone.
This marks the worst reading since the height of the COVID pandemic, which bottomed out at 44 in July 2020.
Meanwhile, the PBD/TIPP Financial Stress Index has skyrocketed – hitting 69.3 (above 50 indicates 'high stress') – or around where it was during the 2008 financial crisis. Under Biden's watch it's climbed 22%.
As I&I notes:
For Biden to say the economy “is on the move” is truly delirious. GDP was down 1.4% in the first quarter, and nearly half of adults think we are already in a recession, the IBD/TIPP poll found.
DOOCY: "Americans are now spending $5,000 a year on gasoline. That’s almost double what they did a year ago. Where are people supposed to go to get all that extra cash?"
JEAN-PIERRE: "To get the extra cash to pay for gas?”
JEAN-PIERRE: “Well, I mean…" pic.twitter.com/KPzvhGxx78
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) May 18, 2022
I&I also points out that while Biden brags about creating "8.3 million jobs in my first 15 months in office – a record," there were 12.5 million jobs created during the last nine months of the Trump administration – with more than half of those having been lost during the lockdowns.
More via I&I:
Biden also likes to boast about wage growth, without pointing out that inflation has climbed faster than wages, leaving workers worse off – real wages are down 3% since he took office. This, too, is a dramatic turnaround from the Trump years, when real wages climbed 10%.
The IBD/TIPP Poll found that only 18% of the adults surveyed say their earnings have kept pace with inflation.
In his remarks last week, Biden said “when you look at the economy today, it’s clear that we’ve made enormous strides.”
He’s right about that. Unfortunately, those enormous strides have all been in the wrong direction.