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What global economic slowdown, stock market drops, and inverted yield curve?
When President Trump's economic advisers come to chat, they give him a rosy view of things, arguing that the domestic economy is stronger than forecasters are saying, people with knowledge of the matter told The Washington Post on Thursday. They have not come up with any plans for a possible recession because they don't think one is on the horizon, and they believe if they do come up with something, that will make people think there's a problem and trigger a crash, the Post reports.
Trump is keeping up appearances in public, tweeting on Thursday that the U.S. economy is "the Biggest, Strongest, and Most Powerful Economy in the World," but privately he's "rattled," a Republican close to the White House told the Post. Trump, this person added, has shared with friends that he doesn't trust the statistics he sees on the news, as he feels economists and forecasters are likely working together to present biased data to hurt his re-election chances. "He thinks that all the people that do this economic forecasting are a bunch of establishment weenies — elites who don't know anything about the real economy and they're against Trump," the GOP source said.
National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow says there's nothing to see here, telling the Post that "nobody likes to see market volatility. I get that. You get bears coming out of the woodwork. I get that. But we've been through that before." Lawrence Summers, former treasury secretary and National Economic Council director during the Obama administration, is on a completely different wavelength, telling the Post the government always has to be prepared for a recession.
"When the economy turns down, one of the most important resources we have is policymakers' credibility," he said. "Ludicrous forecasts and economically illiterate statements have dissipated the credibility of the president's economic team."