Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Cutting Spending Bad For Economic Growth?

I'll leave the statistical anaylsis of this to those like my friend Cory but it appears that despite what the GOP would have us believe, cutting spending is actually bad for growth.

From the start of the Great Recession in December 2007 through the end of 2010, 24 states have cut government spending by an average of 7.5 percent after adjusting for inflation. Another 25 states have expanded government outlays by an average of 11 percent. (The analysis excludes Alabama due to data problems reported by the National Association of State Budget Offices). And the differences in these states’ economic performance could not be more self-evident. Relative to national economic trends, states that increased spending enjoyed on average:
  • 0.2 percentage point decrease in the unemployment rate
  • 1.4 percent increase in private employment
  • 0.5 percent real economic growth since the start of the recession
In contrast, states that cut spending saw on average
  • 1 percentage point increase in the unemployment rate
  • 2.1 percent loss of private employment
  • 2.9 percent real economic contraction relative to the national economic trend


  1. Dang it! I'd do the statistical analysis, but ThinkProgress didn't provide the original data, did they?

  2. Actually if you go to the link to American Center For Progress, they give
    the links used to come up with their numbers as well as providing a bunch of
    other stats and the article author does provide the source for his numbers
    though you are correct the Think Progress post doesn't link to it.


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