While many 2020 Democratic candidate hopefuls point to wealth inequality as a growing issue in the United States, economist Stephen Moore argues that the stock market’s growth under President Donald Trump has provided 100 million stock-owning Americans — not just the rich — with around $10 trillion in earnings.
In his latest column on TheHill.com, Moore, who was one of Trump’s picks for the Federal Reserve board before bowing out amid a controversy over articles in the past, says that the left is wrong in assuming the rich are the only beneficiaries of a healthy stock market.
Here is Moore’s take on the U.S. economy under Trump, per The Hill:
This column comes with a caveat. Past performance does not guarantee future results. That is the warning on any investment fund, so I will use it as my disclaimer as I boast about what President Trump has done for the 100 million Americans who own stocks either directly or through funds.
The spectacular numbers for American wealth speak for themselves. In November 2016, a few days before the election when almost all betting was that Hillary Clinton would score a landslide victory against Donald Trump, the Dow Jones Industrial Average stood at less than 17,900. It now stands at more than 26,900. That, ladies and gentlemen, is a 50% return in stock values in just over 30 months. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq have had similar upward climbs, but not quite as fast as the Dow Jones.
The value of all American stocks today is estimated at roughly $36 trillion, according to a report by Nasdaq. So we have already seen a $10 trillion to $12 trillion wealth boost under this president. That is more than the entire gross domestic product of most countries in the world. It is why everyone wants to invest in our country. It is also equivalent to roughly $10,000 for every American household. It is spectacular vindication for the Trump administration tax cuts and policy changes which the left has opposed.
It also questions all the predictive powers of left wing economists like Paul Krugman and the sages at the New York Times and the Washington Post editorial boards. Krugman famously declared the day after Trump won the election that the stock market would never recover from his presidency. (Could you imagine taking stock tips from this guru?) The Washington Post wrote one month before the election that “President Trump could destroy the world economy.” No retraction yet.
Do not buy this class warfare nonsense that only the rich prosper when stocks do better. It is true the wealthy own a lot of stocks because they have more money to invest. But a recent Gallup poll found that more than half of American households own stocks directly, and millions more own stocks through their union or company pension plans. When companies do better, workers and families do better. Moreover, hiring and benefits are highly correlated with the stock market. Very few companies provide bonuses, wage increases, or job offerings when they are losing money.
One thing is certain. The line by Democratic presidential contenders such as Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, and Corey Booker, who repeatedly say that only the rich are prospering under the Trump economy, is showing up false with every passing day. With wages up 3.1 percent in the latest jobs report, our country is seeing a rising tide that is lifting almost all boats.
How long can the current bull market rally continue? No one can really know, but what seems clear is that if Trump can reach a solid trade deal with China, one that lowers tariffs in both countries, then one of the few dark clouds on the economic horizon could dissipate. The bottom line is a wealthier United States is great for all Americans, except for those who hate Trump so much that they are actually rooting for our country to fail.