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The economy is booming! Or is it?

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The economy is booming. Since the market crash in 2008, the rate of unemployment is at an all-time low, with the latest study showing an unemployment rate of 3.7 percent. In the second quarter of 2018, GDP increased 4.2 percent and in the third quarter, 3.5 percent. While all of these are sure signs that the economy is doing well, some problems remain, and it doesn’t look like they’ll go away any time soon.

In a new article written for The Stream, Acton’s Director of research, Samuel Gregg, writes that these remaining problems mostly stem from political misjudgment. Gregg addresses debt and Medicare entitlement spending, pointing out that “neither major party has strong political incentive to pursue the entitlement reform America needs.” In addition, just because America’s economy is doing well doesn’t mean the same can be said for other countries. For example, China’s economy has been slowing down during the last few years, partly due to protectionist policies and hindered by the lack of strong property rights and rule of law. “The sheer size of China’s economy means its problems would affect the rest of us,” writes Gregg. “In 2008, no country could immunize itself from America’s financial crisis.”

Economic problems on the horizon are both “hard to identify” and complex. Even if we had increased political will to address them, there are elements we can’t control. “But,” says Gregg, “that’s precisely why we must highlight these issues and encourage policy-makers of all parties to have the courage to address them in times of prosperity.”

To learn more, read Gregg’s full article, “The Economy is Booming, But There’s Trouble on the Horizon.”

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Caroline Roberts Caroline Roberts has a B.A. in English from Grove City College and produces the Acton Institute’s podcast, Radio Free Acton.

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