The White House said the September jobs report showed “American grit,” with the nation adding 661,000 jobs, and the unemployment rate falling to 7.9%. But as the Trump administration touts the numbers as signs the country is returning to its pre-pandemic beat, media reports have pointed out that job gains have slowed as the coronavirus response continues to throw water on a full-blown recovery.
Economist Stephen Moore told The Cats Roundtable he rejected the negative headlines, doubted the need for a new stimulus package, and predicted continued economic growth.
The economy is really showing signs of picking up,” Moore told The Cats Roundtable. “I don’t care what the newspapers say. I see really strong numbers coming in for the 3rd quarter.”
Moore pointed to increased consumer spending in the 3rd quarter and echoed the Goldman Sach’s forecast for a 35% growth in GDP earlier this September.
“I think there’s evidence that business is getting back to usual, especially in the ten states that have opened up their economies,” Moore told The Cats Roundtable.
Moore noted recent Gallop Poll data that showed a majority of Americans considered themselves “better off” today than they were four years ago.
“Even with the pandemic and the shutdown of the economy—I think people are feeling a little better about things. They see a light at the end of the tunnel,” he reflected.
Moore said that the good numbers with the jobs report, as well as the predicted growth for the 3rd quarter, made the need for a new stimulus package questionable.
“At this point, I’m not so sure we need a $2 trillion stimulus bill. I just don’t think it’s necessary, or even necessarily helpful, when we already have a $3 trillion deficit,” Moore told the Cats Roundtable.
Moore then turned his attention to the economic recovery plan of Joe Biden, a $700 billion proposal, which Biden and Democrats have hinted they hoped would lead to the creation of a broader “new” New Deal.
The New Deal was implemented by President Franklin Roosevelt in the wake of the Great Depression and is championed by many Democrats as the epitome of a successful recovery. Moore called it “historical mythology” that the deal is seen as “raging success,” citing the continued high unemployment rates during Roosevelt’s first two terms in office.
Moore told The Cats Roundtable the idea that the US was going to solve the economy’s problems with a massive multi-trillion spending plan is flawed, and with raised taxes on American businesses, he called it a recipe that will “only work to the benefit of our foreign competitors.”
Moore told The Cats Roundtable a full-economic recovery was possible but said the differing state-by-state response to the pandemic, especially in blue states, is holding that recovery back.
“The problem is, exactly, these blue states, like New York, like New Jersey, like Illinois, and even California, that are still in many ways locked down,” Moore told The Cats Roundtable, adding “It’ time to open up. We have to get our schools open, we’ve got to get our stores open, we’ve got to get our factories open.”
While Moore emphasized the need to open up in a “safe way, with masks and social distancing,” he added the evidence made it “pretty clear now that lockdowns don’t work.”
“Lockdowns have not prevented the spread of the disease, socially responsible behavior is what will do that. So if we could get those cities open, we’d have a sonic boom economy.”
And with the economy returning to some sense of “normalcy” ahead of the November election, Moore cautioned against the “changing the captain of the ship.”
Listen to the interview below