Since the Great Depression, the economy has fared better under Democratic presidents than Republican presidents. This fact holds true regardless of the economic measure used: Economic growth, employment, job creation, income and productivity have all been stronger under Democratic presidents.
From 1933 to 2020, the economy grew at an average rate of 4.6% per year under Democratic presidents, or nearly double the 2.4% under Republican presidents. There were 14 different presidents over this time—seven Democrats and seven Republicans. Democratic presidents consistently ranked higher in economic growth and job creation:
- Of the seven presidents with the highest annual economic growth rate, five are Democrats. Conversely, five of the seven presidents with the lowest economic growth rate are Republicans.
- Of the seven presidents with the highest annual rate of job creation, six are Democrats. On the flip side, six of the seven presidents with the lowest job creation are Republicans.
- Most recently, President Biden has overseen 5.7% real GDP growth, the highest annual economic growth rate since 1984, and the creation of 7.4 million jobs.
Democratic presidents often inherit weak economies and leave their successors with strong ones. In fact, 10 of the last 11 recessions began under Republican presidents. For example, after inheriting the Great Recession from President Bush, President Obama handed Trump the longest continuous run of job creation under a single president in modern U.S. history. President Trump became the first president to oversee net job losses during his single term in office, while the U.S. economy is experiencing record job growth since President Biden took office.