WASHINGTON — U.S. economic growth is languishing below its pre-recession pace, and a Gallup study, published in partnership with the U.S. Council on Competitiveness, finds that the problems go back much further.
In the seven years since the Great Recession, job growth in the United States has been steady and unemployment has fallen from 10 percent to just under 5 percent. Booming tech and professional services sectors should denote a healthy economy, but a new Gallup analysis identifies fundamental weaknesses in the U.S. economy that have emerged over decades.
Economic growth has gradually fallen since the 1970s and 1980s, and three large sectors bear primary responsibility for the malaise: healthcare, housing and education. In 1980, healthcare, housing and education claimed 25 percent of national spending. By 2015, that share had ballooned to 36 percent. The costs to both national and per capita GDP are enormous, Gallup noted.
As the costs of these services rise, the value they generate — in terms of health, learning and shelter — has stagnated or even declined. When the quality-to-cost ratio falls, living standards do as well, researchers explained.
Gallup’s analysis, in collaboration with the U.S. Council on Competitiveness, presents the causes and effects of long-term U.S. productivity decline, and makes a case for a new growth strategy.
People can download the full report No Recovery: An Analysis of Long-Term U.S. Productivity Decline.
SOURCE: Gallup press release