From Maria Bartiromo in The WSJ, Dow 24000 and the Trump Boom:
Year One has been nothing short of excellent from an economic standpoint. Corporate earnings have risen and corporate behavior has changed, measured in greater capital investment. Businesspeople tell me that a new approach to regulation is a big factor. During President Obama’s final year in office the Federal Register, which contains new and proposed rules and regulations, ran to 95,894 pages, according to a Competitive Enterprise Institute report. This was the highest level in its history and 19% higher than the previous year’s 80,260 pages. The American Action Forum estimates the last administration burdened the economy with 549 million hours of compliance, averaging nearly five hours of paperwork for every full-time employee.
Behind these numbers are countless business owners who have told me they set aside cash for compliance, legal fees and other costs of regulation. That money could have been used to fund projects that strengthened their businesses. President Trump has charted a new course, prioritizing the removal of red tape and rolling back regulations through executive orders. The Federal Register page count is down 32% this year. Mr. Trump says red tape becomes “beautiful” when it is eliminated, and people who manage businesses certainly agree.
While tax relief is in the spotlight, we have underestimated the other friction costs, the regulatory growth that wastes valuable economy growing and job creating resources. The stock market boom happened because the beating stopped.