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Should We Worry About the Slowing Economy?

Posted April 01, 2019

Under Economic Issues, International Trade Issues

(Ruchir Sharma – New York Times)

Last year looked like the time when President Trump had delivered on his promises to strengthen the economy. His tax cuts appeared to juice growth above 3 percent, a pace the United States had not topped since 2005. But on Thursday the Commerce Department revised 2018 growth downward to below 3 percent, even as forecasts for 2019 were also trending lower, toward 2 percent. It all has triggered another wave of disappointed commentary about doggedly “slow” growth in the United States.

But it is not just an American story, and it’s not just Mr. Trump who won’t deliver on promises of 3, 4 or even 5 percent growth. Across the world, economists have had to downgrade growth forecasts in most years since the global financial crisis of 2008.

Defying the hopeful projections, Japan has rarely grown faster than 1 percent. Europe has struggled to sustain growth faster than 1.5 percent. No one quite knows how fast China is growing, but it’s clear that there, too, the economy is slowing. So why is the dismal science suddenly guilty of issuing overly optimistic forecasts that set the whole world up for disappointment? Click here to read more.