CHART OF THE DAY: Spending Is The Problem

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Janet Yellen Vice-Chair of the San Francisco Federal Reserve has a big new speech out about how slow this recovery has been, and why.

One of the culprits for the slower recovery?

Fiscal policy.

Specifically? Were not spending enough.

Government spending, which usually provides a boost to the economy in the quarters following the recession, has been a net drag this time because the government is spending less than it normally does.

As this chart shows, in the initial 4 quarters since the start of ths recovery, government spending provided its standard boost to GDP.

But in the 8 quarter and 12 quarter period after that, fiscal policy has been a drag, as spending growth has been a lot slower than in past recoveries.

So yes, spending is the problem. We just need to crank it up.

Chart of the day by Janet Yellen shows how fiscal policy has been a drag on recovery. February 2013

Photo: Janet Yellen, Federal Reserve

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