Trump pledges 4% growth, 25 mn jobs

Washington, Sep 16 (IANS) Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has said his economic proposals will boost the US economy to grow at a pace of four per cent a year.

Trump, speaking at the Economic Club of New York on Thursday, said it was time “to reach” for four per cent growth.

His plan calls for lowering taxes, removing “destructive” regulations, increasing US energy production, and negotiating new trade deals in favour of American businesses.

Trump also laid out a blueprint to create 25 million new jobs in a decade, which would be more than three times as many as created since 2006.

The most jobs ever created over such a period were the 24.4 million added in the 10 years ending in March 2001, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The worst stretch was the decade through March 2010, when two million jobs were lost.

His challenger, Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, has said she plans to boost the stock of well-paying jobs, and bring the economy to “full employment”.

It has been a while since the economy hit that target. Specifically, it was during former President Bill Clinton’s administration when it grew an average of nearly four per cent a year, CNN reported.

Growth registered four per cent in 1994 and then topped that each year from 1997 to 2000. It hit a high of 4.7 per cent in 1999.

“I think we can do better than that,” Trump said about that target, although he said his economists did not want him to promise that.

Others have been critical of Trump’s economic plans. Oxford Economics, a British forecasting firm, estimates his proposals would cut $1 trillion a year from the US economy, a much bigger hit than what occurred during the Great Recession of 2008 and 2009.

The big expansion during the Clinton years was fuelled in large part by a technological revolution — the widespread adoption of personal computers and the internet.

But that kind of sustained, rapid economic growth is relatively rare. The US has only four or more straight years of four per cent growth three times since the end of World War II.

Besides the Clinton years, those periods were from 1962 to 1966, and from 1950 to 1953.

Economic growth has been weak since the recession ended in 2009, ranging between 1.6 per cent and 2.6 per cent a year.

It has slowed to about one per cent each of the last three quarters. Trump denounced it as the weakest recovery of the last 70 years.

But the Great Recession was the most severe hit to the economy since the Great Depression, and the damage it did was global in nature.

Even though the US has recovered at a modest pace, it has got one of the strongest economies in the developed world.

–IANS

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