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Biden: Americans ‘Shouldn’t Believe’ Warnings From Economists About Recession

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Joe Biden

During an interview on Thursday with the Associated Press, President Biden told Americans that they “shouldn’t believe” warnings from economists about the United States entering a recession next year. Biden’s comments came shortly after a report from the Bureau of Economic Analysis revealed that the United States economy shrank at a 1.5% annual rate during the first quarter of 2022.

“You’ve got serious economists who warn of a recession next year… What should Americans believe?” AP reporter Josh Boak asked Biden.

“They shouldn’t believe a warning. They should just say: ‘Let’s see. Let’s see, which is correct.’ And from my perspective, you talked about a recession. First of all, it’s not inevitable,” Biden replied before claiming that he reduced the federal deficit and increased pay for American workers.

Biden’s claim that he reduced the federal deficit is an embellishment “for the ages,” as explained by The Wall Street Journal, and assumes that he fails in enacting his desired agenda – like passing his Build Back Better plan or additional COVID relief.

“[Biden’s] also using the fiscal 2020 budget as his benchmark. Congress passed $2 trillion in Covid relief in March 2020 to prevent a recession. Both parties piled on $900 billion more that December, and Democrats in March 2021 ladled out nearly $2 trillion more. The deficit is declining because Congress blew it out for two years,” The Wall Street Journal wrote, noting that the inflation crisis that began shortly after Biden took office also contributed to increased government revenues. “Revenues have been surging thanks to strong corporate profits, capital gains, and rising nominal incomes. Inflation is always good for government coffers. Receipts are up 28% during the first four months of this fiscal year. But the Congressional Budget Office still projects deficits to exceed $1 trillion on average over the next decade.”

Additionally, Biden’s claim that he increased pay for American workers is false when adjusting for inflation. According to a report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Real average hourly earnings decreased 3.0 percent, seasonally adjusted, from May 2021 to May 2022. The change in real average hourly earnings combined with a decrease of 0.9 percent in the average workweek resulted in a 3.9-percent decrease in real average weekly earnings over this period.”

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Economy

Atlanta Fed’s GDP Tracker Shows United States May Be In A Recession

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Joe Biden

The United States has likely entered a recession, according to the Federal Reserve’s key gauge for measuring economic activity.

The Atlanta Fed’s GDPNow measure, which tracks economic data in real time and continuously adjusts projections, says that the United States economy will shrink by 2.1% in the second quarter. A 2.1% contraction in the second quarter paired with the first quarter’s decline of 1.6% would meet the definition of a recession.

“GDPNow has a strong track record, and the closer we get to July 28th’s release [of the initial Q2 GDP estimate] the more accurate it becomes,” wrote Nicholas Colas, co-founder of DataTrek Research.

The tracker fell dramatically last week from an estimate of 0.3% after data “showing further weakness in consumer spending and inflation-adjusted domestic investment prompted the cut that put the April-through-June period into negative territory,” CNBC reported.

“One big change in the quarter has been rising interest rates,” CNBC added. “In an effort to curb surging inflation, the Fed has jacked up its benchmark borrowing rate by 1.5 percentage points since March, with more increases likely to come through the remainder of the year and perhaps into 2023.”

Last week, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell warned that the decision to fight inflation by increasing interest rates was “highly likely” to cause pain to Americans.

During the European Central Bank forum, host Francine Laqua asked Powell, “If you’re speaking out to the American people to try and help them understand how long it will take for, you know, monetary policy to go back to something that resembles normalcy … what would you tell them?”

“I would say that we fully understand and appreciate … the pain people are going through dealing with higher inflation, that we have the tools to address that and the resolve to use them, and that we are committed to and will succeed in getting inflation down to two percent,” Powell responded.

“The process is likely, highly likely to involve some pain, but the worst pain would be from failing to address this high inflation and allowing it to become persistent,” he added.

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Economy

Biden’s Fed Chairman: Solving Inflation ‘Highly Likely To Involve Some Pain’ For Americans

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On Wednesday, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said that solving the inflation crisis is “highly likely” to cause pain to Americans but that it would be less painful than not addressing inflation.

During the European Central Bank forum, host Francine Laqua asked Powell, “If you’re speaking out to the American people to try and help them understand how long it will take for, you know, monetary policy to go back to something that resembles normalcy … what would you tell them?

“I would say that we fully understand and appreciate … the pain people are going through dealing with higher inflation, that we have the tools to address that and the resolve to use them, and that we are committed to and will succeed in getting inflation down to two percent,” he responded.

“The process is likely, highly likely to involve some pain, but the worst pain would be from failing to address this high inflation and allowing it to become persistent,” Powell added.

Powell’s comments come as inflation has reached the highest rate in more than 40 years with prices rising 8.6% from May 2021 to May 2022, according to a new report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

In order to bring down inflation, the Federal Reserve increased the interest rate by 0.75% earlier this month – the highest increase since 1994 – and warned of additional increases in the interest rate in the future.

“The three-quarter-point hike brings the federal funds rate to between 1.5% and 1.75%. The federal funds rate dictates what it costs for banks to borrow money from each other. And, generally, higher interest rates mean it’s more expensive for consumers to get a mortgage, obtain a loan to buy a vehicle and to carry a balance on a credit card,” NBC News reported. “The expected effect of these changes is that consumers will spend less and the heightened demand for goods — one of the drivers of inflation — will slow down.”

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