The Bush Boom Was A Complete Bust

The underlying facts of the latest expansion are incredibly simple. Let's use some charts and graphs to explain the basic problems.

First, we have this graph from Spencer England's Economic Review. It clearly shows that establishment job growth during this expansion was the worst of any expansion since 1958.

As the result of lack of job growth, upward wage pressure is non-existent. As a result, real median household income (that's inflation adjusted) was at a level which according to the Census Bureau is, "not statistically different from a 1999 pre-recession peak." That means we went through an entire expansion without a pay raise for most Americans.

As a result, we get the latest information from the worker confidence surveys:

The survey found one-third of workers said they often don't have enough money to make ends meet.

About one-third of respondents say the amount they owe on credit cards exceeds their retirement savings; another 3% say their credit-card debt would cancel out their retirement account, according to the random survey of 1,000 people, 587 of whom are in the labor force.

Only half of respondents said they are working the number of hours they want to work and a third say there has been a change in the number of hours they work in the past three months. Eighteen percent were working more hours, and 14% worked fewer.

Repeat after me:

1.) The weakest job growth of the last 50 years, leads to

2.) Stagnant incomes for most Americans which leads to

3.) Really depressed people.

Any questions?