Speed Reads

putting that economics degree to work

Donald Trump. Jr says Obama never broke 2 percent GDP growth. He did. 15 times.

Donald Trump Jr. is a proud son. When he heard the news of the economy surging to 4.1 percent GDP growth, he immediately took to Twitter to tout his father's achievements.

"Incredible numbers," he wrote. "I remember when 'the experts' laughed about breaking 3 percent. Just because Obama never broke 2 percent doesn't mean that someone with great policies can't."

There's just one problem with Jr.'s claim: Former President Barack Obama did, in fact, break 2 percent growth on multiple occasions. There were 15 quarters during Obama's presidency when the economy experienced 2 percent growth or higher, data from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis shows. Additionally, Trump Jr. is boasting that today's rate is the fastest since 2014's 4.9 percent growth — which he may recall was a year when a certain other president was in office.

While Trump Jr. crowed with delight over the 4.1 percent growth rate, economists have said that the high rate is likely not sustainable because it was aided by trade activity spurred by the current global exchange of tariffs. The growth is likely temporary, experts say, and will probably cool down to around 3 percent throughout the rest of 2018. The president's son might be less excited about that number when he recalls that 2015's annual growth was 2.9 percent.