Friday, February 02, 2018

Apples to Apples

Did you notice that Donald Trump said, in his State of the Union Address, that "since the election, we have created 2.4 million new jobs"?

Since the election? So now he's taking credit for over half a million of Obama's jobs, too?

One might suppose Trump is arguing you need to start counting from the election, since that result immediately and decisively kicked job creation momentum into high gear, from the moment the economy knew it was in better (if smaller) hands. Except that job creation under Trump has slowed a bit compared to Obama. No wonder Trump needs to steal half a million jobs from his predecessor.

As of this morning we have a full year of Trump job numbers on the books, so I'm using this as an opportunity to update my previous post, "The Trump Jobs Miracle". You should read it too.

In order to compare Trump's performance with Obama's, I give totals here for the past five years, but for the period February through January. That's because Trump was inaugurated January 20, 2017. His first full month in office was February, from which I begin counting. It's the best way I know to do an "apples to apples" comparison. Trump's first full twelve months ended with January 2018. Not everybody compares this way, but Obama beats Trump regardless of where you start counting—assuming, of course, that we disallow stealing three of Obama's months to add to Trump's first twelve. That would be cheating.

So for the period February 2017 through January 2018—twelve full months under Trump—the economy created  2.1 million jobs.

For February 2016 through January 2017, under Obama, 2.5 million jobs were created.

The year before that it was 2.6 million. Before that it was 3.0 million. And for February 2013 through January 2014 the total was 2.3 million.

Going back five years, Obama significantly trumps Trump every single year. Howzabout that.

The monthly numbers for my totals come from the authoritative Bureau of Labor Statistics. Because the table changes monthly, and the most recent two months are always preliminary and subject to revision, I freeze a snapshot of today's BLS table here. Use the link above to get the latest.

Click on the table for a larger view.

Copyright (C) 2018 James Michael Brennan, All Rights Reserved

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