Will Donald Trump ever get poor

One year US President - Donald Trump's poor economic record

New jobs

The promise: "I will be the greatest workplace president that God ever created." (Donald Trump, presidential candidacy, July 16, 2015)

The result: The trend towards job creation continues under Donald Trump. There is sometimes a shortage of skilled workers. It is expected that wages will rise and that inflation will rise as a result. It remains to be seen whether it is Donald Trump's merit or that of his predecessor Barack Obama.

National debt

The promise: "President Obama has almost doubled the national debt to 19 trillion US dollars and more." (Donald Trump, party conference, July 22, 2016). During the election campaign, Trump promised in an interview with the Washington Post that he would completely reduce the national debt in two terms of office.

The result: In the first year of government, the debt increases by another 700 billion US dollars. In addition, the tax reform burdens the budget with another 150 billion US dollars annually.


The promise: “We will renew the infrastructure in such a way that it dwarfs everything. This will create millions of jobs. "(Donald Trump, speech on election victory, Nov. 8, 2016)

The result: The implementation of infrastructure programs will not be tackled in the first year.

"America First"

The promise: "The most important difference between our plan and that of our opponents is that America comes first with us. Americanism, not globalism, is our creed. "(Donald Trump, party congress, July 22, 2016)

The result: Trump lets the trade agreements TTIP with Europe and TPP with Asia fail. He is not suspending the North American free trade agreement with Canada and Mexico, but wants to renegotiate it. While he was still talking to China about currency manipulation during the election campaign and threatened with punitive tariffs, he was courted as president in Beijing last November and signed economic agreements worth 250 billion US dollars.


The promise: “I will cut taxes, especially for the middle class. That leads to millions of well-paying jobs. "(Donald Trump, campaign appearance, Aug. 8, 2016)

The result: The tax reform comes into force on January 1, 2018. Above all, companies are relieved. Your taxes will drop from 35 percent to 21 percent. The middle class benefits significantly less than the upper income groups. In addition, the tax breaks for private individuals are limited to 10 years.

Trump is not a protectionist.
Author: Martin Naville Head of the Swiss-American Chamber of Commerce

Martin Naville heads the Swiss-American Chamber of Commerce. In the interview, he does not see the tax reform as pure extra income for the rich. Medium-sized companies also benefit. However, he thinks little of saying goodbye to multilateral trade agreements - especially from a Swiss perspective.

SRF: Martin Naville, the economy is booming, the stock market is booming - you should actually be really satisfied with Donald Trump.

Martin Naville: We should talk a little less about Donald Trump because he takes a bit of getting used to. But we should talk about how the US was five years ago and how it is today. The news is actually very positive. The economy is booming, the stock market is booming, and unemployment is falling. With the tax cut and deregulation, a lot of positive things are happening for the US economy.

The greatest success seems to be the tax reform. There, however, there is criticism that only the rich and companies would benefit. The middle class and the poor do not benefit.

The poor will hardly benefit because they don't pay taxes. It's the same with us. A third in the US don't pay taxes. But there is a lot in it for medium-sized companies: The 15 percent tax category drops to 12 percent. The standard deduction will be increased from 12,000 to 24,000 and the child allowance from 1,000 to 2,000. In addition, hundreds of thousands of employees, for example from Bank of America or American Airlines, received 1,000-franc vouchers. Many companies have raised the minimum dare.

As you can see: Donald Trump is not a big fan of trade agreements. After the cancellation of the TTP and TTIP and after NAFTA wobbles, will no more transnational agreement come about?

I don't want to be suspected of being a Trump fan, but: Trump is not a protectionist. Trump is a globalizer. He wants to trade with the whole world. But he wants to do it according to American rules - and above all bilaterally.

So between two countries?

Yes, because if the big US makes a deal with the “little Philippines” or “little Vietnam”, it is much cheaper for them than if the agreement is multinational. TPP was an association of twelve countries. The USA had to give up a lot of feathers in accordance with the principle of consensus with other countries. Trump expects a lot more when he can negotiate bilaterally.

You're at the World Economic Forum next week. If you could meet Donald Trump, what would you say to him?

If I could, I would make the following point: For many small partner countries like Switzerland, a multilateral negotiation is much more important than a bilateral one. The end result would also be positive for the USA.

The interview was conducted by Reto Lipp.