'Fragile' US Economy Hammered In Q1 By Election-Spending Hangover

Tyler Durden's picture

Growth in U.S. personal consumption expenditures in the first quarter of 2017 was slowest since 2009, according to data released Friday by the Commerce Department.

A big reason for that was the second-largest contraction in spending by non-profits (i.e. election-related lobbying/spending) in 57 years of data.

As Bloomberg details, according to monthly consumption data through February, the drag seems to owe to a sharp decline in spending by professional advocacy groups, which always surges during U.S. presidential elections, and hit a record high in November.


And what that means for GDP is clear - the post-Clinton-Loss collapse in spending by 'professional advocacy' groups has erased 0.3 percentage points from GDP growth in Q1 (after boosting it by 0.25 points in Q3)

Two things spring to mind:

1) How fragile is the US economy that election-related spending can have such a huge impact on relative growth? And/or the flipside of that...


2) How massive is election-related spending that it now makes a significant cyclical impact to the nation's GDP growth?

Finally, we could not help but note the last time election-related spending collapsed at such a pace (as Q1 2017's post-Clinton-loss) was in Q1 1997 (when Bill Clinton won his second term). What is with the Clintons? Bottomless pockets?

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NoDebt's picture

I've been working on making my advisory business into a non-profit for a few years now, on and off.

Near as I can tell, if I give away only 15% of my revenues, I can qualify as a 501(c)3.  At least financially.  15% of the gross is within spitting distance of my current effective tax rate on the net (earnings).  

Getting closer.  Still mulling the idea over.

knukles's picture

So Bribery and Extortion are Accounted for in the Official US Statistics

Raffie's picture

The VIX is low, how can our economy be fragile?

OH NO! ZH is making FAKE NEWS....... its truly the end of the world as we know it.




PrayingMantis's picture


... >>> "'Fragile' US Economy Hammered ..."

... after the Vietnam War fiasco, the US$ was taken off the gold standard and ushered in the fiat economy ... ... that's when the "fragile" US economy got hammered and the tipping-point started to go the  other way  ...

... all we see now are consequences of war and bad negotiations in industry, manufacturing and trade ... plus more hammering of non-RedShield-aligned countries like North Korea, Syria, Iran and on a lesser-scale, Cuba...

... this hammering of the economy had been played numerous times by empires in the past ... invade, spend money on endless wars, spend more on keeping up colonial spending, borrowing some more from (((moneychangers))) to keep up these cycles, then, when the gold-or-other-metals-that-prop-up-the-currency dries up, declare bankruptcy and the (((moneychangers))) laugh their way to their own bank ... then another empire-wannabe takes over ... wash, rinse repeat ...

... once the BRICS consortium switches to a gold-standard world, that's when the proverbial poopoo would hit the woowoo for NATO  ...



BigFatUglyBubble's picture

found the church of NoDebt, start wearing religious garb including a golden cod piece!

Rainman's picture

Lest we forget, the ObamaScare tax hikes went stratospheric in Q1 ... that why niggas is broke, all the niggas

BigFatUglyBubble's picture

Yet my wife (as pictured in iconograph) is wolfing down more devil dogs than ever!

_RRR_'s picture

I'm still wondering who did max their CC just because teh Donald won



no one?

I am Jobe's picture

Not according these girls and their proud parents 


Hot Girls Wanted (2015)
Hope Copy's picture

The BRICS are as addicted to fiat money as any other set of nations.. Gold is going to be used as trading insurance..  That's all.  Paying debt with gold will inevitably drive the price down for the short run.. until there is the inability to pay..  Frank-Dodd is the Fed insurance card.. Gold confiscation will lead to a drop in price at least in the beginning.  Investors will get fleeced and producers will make bank in the long run, but only in the local currency.  Gold is the payment of last resort.