Yeah, it’s sort of like comparing apples with oranges since each Prez had to deal with unique challenges, but this is a decent article from Forbes to argue with anyone who is just stuck on the Gospel of St. Ronnie.
Obama Outperforms Reagan On Jobs, Growth And Investing
by Adam Hartung
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) today issued America’s latest jobs report covering August. And it’s a disappointment. The economy created an additional 142,000 jobs last month. After six consecutive months over 200,000, most pundits expected the string to continue, including ADP which just yesterday said 204,000 jobs were created in August.
One month variation does not change a trend
Even though the plus-200,000 monthly string was broken (unless revised upward at a future date,) unemployment did continue to decline and is now reported at only 6.1%. Jobless claims were just over 300,000; lowest since 2007. Despite the lower than expected August jobs number, America will create about 2.5 million new jobs in 2014.
And that is great news.
Back in May, 2013 (15 months ago) the Dow was out of its recession doldrums and hitting new highs. I asked readers if Obama could, economically, be the best modern President? Through discussion of that question, the number one issue raised by readers was whether the stock market was a good economic barometer for judging “best.” Many complained that the measure they were watching was jobs - and that too many people were still looking for work.
To put this week’s jobs report in economic perspective I reached out to Bob Deitrick, CEO of Polaris Financial Partners and author of Bulls, Bears and the Ballot Box (which I profiled in October, 2012 just before the election) for some explanation. Since then Polaris’ investor newsletters have consistently been the best predictor of economic performance. Better than all the major investment houses.
Bob Deitrick: “President Reagan has long been considered the best modern economic President. So we compared his performance dealing with the oil-induced recession of the 1980s with that of President Obama and his performance during this ‘Great Recession.’
“As this unemployment chart shows, President Obama’s job creation kept unemployment from peaking at as high a level as President Reagan, and promoted people into the workforce faster than President Reagan.
“President Obama has achieved a 6.1% unemployment rate in his sixth year, fully one year faster than President Reagan did. At this point in his presidency, President Reagan was still struggling with 7.1% unemployment, and he did not reach into the mid-low 6% range for another full year. So, despite today’s number, the Obama administration has still done considerably better at job creating and reducing unemployment than did the Reagan administration.
“We forecast unemployment will fall to around 5.4% by summer, 2015. A rate President Reagan was unable to achieve during his two terms.”