The stock market has improved significantly during Joe Biden’s first year in office, and the president has outpaced former President Donald Trump in some key economic measures.
The U.S. economy has grown faster during Biden’s first year in office than in any president’s first year since former President Jimmy Carter, who took office in January 1977. Stock markets have also performed well, with the S&P 500 hitting new records.
Though the gains in the Nasdaq and Dow stock indices are behind where they were during Trump’s first year, the S&P 500 is considered the market’s broadest benchmark and is of major importance to investors.
The S&P 500 achieved 70 closing highs this year. This is the second highest number of record highs since 1995, when the index reached 77 all-time highs.
During Trump’s first year in office in 2017, the S&P 500 recorded 62 all-time highs.
Though stock markets were down on Thursday ahead of the final day of trading for 2021, the S&P 500 Nasdaq and Dow have all made significant gains this year. The final gains for the year will become clear once markets close on Friday.
As of Thursday, the S&P 500 was up more than 27 percent this year, the Nasdaq had gained around 22 percent, and the Dow was up nearly 10 percent. The gains in the Nasdaq and the Dow are behind what they were during Trump’s first year, however.
According to recent analysis from Forbes, between January 19, 2017 and late December, 2017 the Dow had gained 24.5 percent. That analysis also showed that the Nasdaq had gained 25.6 percent between January 19, 2017 and late October of that year.
The Nasdaq ended the year 2017 with an overall gain of 28.2 percent, while the Dow recorded an overall gain of 25.1 percent. The S&P 500 closed out 2017 with gains of 19.4 percent.
It appears likely that the S&P 500 will finish the year in a better position than it did in 2017, while the Nasdaq and Dow will have made lower gains than during Trump’s first year in office.
There have also been a number of other positive economic indicators during Biden’s first year. The U.S. unemployment rate fell to 4.2 percent (a 21-month low) while new jobless claims fell to their lowest level since 1969.
Analysis from Bloomberg found that Biden is on track to surpass President Carter in terms of GDP growth, which appears set to grow 5.5 percent in his first year, compared to five percent in Carter’s first year.
There has also been 4.29 percent growth in non-farm payrolls—a figure only surpassed by Carter’s first year—while a recent report from the Conference Board, a business membership and research group organization, found that Americans are set to receive the largest rise in wages and salaries since 2008.
The report found payroll costs for businesses were set to increase 3.9 percent next year.
However, inflation reached a near 40-year high in November and continues to be a major cause of concern that could eat into other economic gains.