Anecdotally, I know that myself and others have felt distracted, depressed and anxious since the election of Donald Trump.

Are there any studies that have objectively sought to measure worker productivity since the election of Donald Trump?

What was their methodology, and what were the results?

If no such study does exist, can you describe any similar studies and what the methodology is?

  • $\begingroup$ Let me know if my answer is not entirely satisfactory, to see how to modify/improve it. $\endgroup$
    – luchonacho
    Jul 6, 2017 at 7:34
  • $\begingroup$ Trump specifically, or just due to presidential elections? Because this happens every four years; there were plenty of depressed people after 2012, 2008, 2004... I suspect drawing conclusions from your acquaintances should be avoided, because that's a highly biased set. $\endgroup$ Jul 6, 2017 at 21:01

1 Answer 1


I think it's too early to identify econometrically an effect of Trump in the economy. Recall that the election was the 8th of November, and his victory came partly as a surprise. He took some time to define his cabinet and got into office the 22nd of January. Thus, any effect of a Trump's "dummy" might only partially be reflected in data for Q4 of 2016, and perhaps not fully in Q1 2017. The release of (worker's productivity) for Q2 2017 is the 9th of July (soon), where we might see more of Trump's effect on the economy and productivity.

The best we can do at the moment is simply look at how the economy has evolved since Trump (see here for a related exercise for Obama).

For example, the favourite measure of labour productivity among economists slowed down in Q4 of 2016 and did not increase in Q1 of 2017:

enter image description here

(Source here).

Similarly, there was an increase in workers productivity in the manufacturing sector in Q4 of 2016, which slowed down considerably in Q1 of 2017:

enter image description here

(Source here).

How these developments are related to Trump is not clear though. Some news reports about these data releases make no mention of a Trump effect (e.g. here (Q4 2017), here or here (Q1 2017)).

Another example comes from the stock market. Here is an analysis showing the performance of the stock market under different presidents, after their 100th days in office. I show the main table below:

enter image description here


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.