December 28, 2020
To end the year, here’s some positive news – Joe Biden is about to inherit a dream economy.
We’re led to believe President-elect Biden will be commanding a damaged, COVID-riddled economy that could take years to return to prosperity. And Mr. Biden agreed with this assessment during the campaign because it made President Trump look bad.
But it’s simply not true.
In fact, President-elect Biden will be inheriting one of the strongest economies in years, if we get the COVID-19 pandemic under control in the first half of 2021, as expected. Then, we may be poised for a rapid rebound. Here’s why:
First, there’s nothing fundamentally broken. Unlike the last two recessions, there was no obvious bubble in any economic sector when the pandemic hit.
Second, the indiscriminate shutdowns provided a solid base. There was a lot of opportunity to rebound when the shutdown’s unnecessary casualties came back online and began to grow, despite the virus. That process will continue and should strengthen when the virus declines.
Third, household finances weren’t crushed. Instead, reduced spending, fiscal stimulus, increasing home prices, and a rising stock market all pushed household net worth above the pre-pandemic peak.
Fourth, national demographics support growth. Millennials are entering their prime home buying years and moving into their peak earning years, fueling higher home prices and durable goods spending. Consider too that we’re just beginning this megatrend.
Fifth, household savings grew by more than $1 trillion this year, providing spending firepower. Sooner or later that money will go into the economy.
And yet, President-elect Biden will probably take credit for any boom. But remember back in February, the economy was humming. Growth was expected. Once we’re past the pandemic, we’ll be back to that “February feeling” and then some.
Happy holidays and onward to a great 2021!