previous U.S. President Barack Obama congratulates U.S. President Donald Trump ~ he take it the oath ... <+> of office. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

2017 Getty images

In the commonwealth government’s fiscal 2020 year that is finishing in 3 days, chairman Trump will have actually overseen a deficit exceeding $3 trillion. This will be after a year whereby it practically topped $1 sunshine in budget 2019 when the economic climate was at the very least healthy.

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These deficits placed them on track because that the four years that Trump has remained in office come exceed the very first four years the President Obama was in office when the economy was digging the end of the great Recession.

Before we get into the number lets resolve the debate that Covid-19 is the reason that this year deficit is for this reason large. That is correct that the coronavirus and also the succeeding shutdown of the economy forced the federal government to invest trillions much more than to plan (about $2 trillion). However, that can also be argued that if there had actually been a coordinated, transparent Federal an answer the impact would have actually been less.


It should additionally be discussed that the statements about how lot debt was produced by Obama frequently leaves the end that as soon as he entered office that the economic climate was in the this of the great Recession, i m sorry he had no manage over.

And for every Presidents’ it need to be provided that the first year’s deficit they room in office is likewise out of your control. The fiscal year is currently four months over and also their predecessor put the Federal spending plan in place. The is an ext appropriate to look at the deficits and also debt offset by at the very least a year, if no two, to enable a brand-new President time come implement their programs. The numbers below include the fiscal year the Obama and Trump were inaugurated.


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First 4 years

Presidents’ have to deal with the cards they are dealt. As provided above Obama inherited the an excellent Recession, while Trump has had to attend to a pandemic.


In Obama’s very first year the deficit increased nearly $1 trillion, indigenous $458 billion to $1.41 trillion. It slowly moved down the following three years because that a full of $5.1 sunshine for his an initial term.

In Trump’s first three years the deficit increased from $585 exchange rate in budget 2016 come $984 exchange rate in budget 2019, up 68%, for a complete of $2.4 trillion. If the coronavirus had actually not fight this year deficit was on-track to it is in $1.1 trillion, every the Congressional budget plan Office or CBO, which would then make Trump’s very first four years deficits full $3.5 trillion. In ~ $1 trillion or an ext this would have been the largest budget deficit in history with a cultivation economy and also the biggest as a percentage of GDP external of recessions or civilization War II.

However, this year’s budget deficit is meant to be $3.3 trillion according to the CBO. This will certainly make Trump’s very first four years complete deficits $5.7 trillion vs. Obama’s $5.1 trillion.


U.S. Federal Deficits

U.S. Treasury Department, federal Reserve financial institution of St. Luigi

Obama’s 2 terms vs. Trump card if re-elected

Even after 4 years Trump will certainly generate virtually as much debt together Obama walk in eight, $5.7 sunshine vs. $7.3 trillion, respectively. And also the CBO jobs that the $1.8 trillion projection for next year will make Trump’s full $7.5 trillion, surpassing Obama’s eight years. Based on the CBO’s projections, if trump is re-elected he will create over $11 trillion in debt.

Obama’s last 3 years vs. Trump’s first three

Probably a an ext “fair” method to look in ~ how large the deficits are in between Trump and Obama is to full the last three years Obama remained in office and also Trump’s first three because the economy was in essentially the same shape during those 6 years.

During Obama’s last three years the total deficits were $1.5 sunshine vs. Trump’s $2.4 trillion. These durations were ~ the great Recession and before the pandemic impact.

As a portion of GDP

Another means to analyze deficits is to compare them to GDP. This helps to eliminate the influence from a bigger economy and also the organic increase in gaue won numbers.

In Obama’s an initial year dealing with the good Recession the deficit was 9.8% that GDP. This decreased to 6.6% in his 4th year and also was 3.1% in his last.

Trump has actually overseen deficits that have increased together a percentage of GDP every year and will to explode in his fourth year. It started at 3.4% in his an initial year, grew to 3.8% and 4.6% in the next two, as his taxes cuts did no generate enough growth and revenues to get over the reduced tax receipts. And also this year the Congressional budget office tasks that the deficit will certainly be 16% the GDP and also only fall to 8.6% next year once the deficit is forecast to be $1.8 trillion.

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U.S. Federal Deficit as a percentage of GDP

U.S. Office the Management and also Budget, federal Reserve bank of St. Luigi
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I administer independent study of modern technology companies and was previously one of two experts that figured out the an innovation holdings because that Atlantic trust (Invesco"s high net worth group), a firm v $15 billion under management. Prior to joining Atlantic Trust ns was the net Security software application analyst because that Smith Barney (where i authored the most considerable industry report “Internet defense Software: The Ultimate net Infrastructure”) and an companies Server Hardware analyst in ~ Salomon Brothers. Prior to becoming an same analyst, I invested 16 year at IBM in a variety of sales and manufacturing positions. I have a B.S. In Industrial engineering from Stanford University and a Postgraduate Diploma in business economics from the university of Sussex, England.