Story highlights Trump administration adviser Steven Mnuchin said Trump is winning the economic 'war' against the Obama administration.
Investors are paying attention.
President Trump's strong economy numbers continue to make headlines, with some stats even rubbing Republican presidential advisers the wrong way.
On Fox Business Network's "Varney & Co." February 11, Trump Economic Adviser Steven Mnuchin said the U.S. is winning the economic "war" against the Obama administration.
Mnuchin said the Federal Reserve (including him) should focus more on job growth and less on the current levels of the national debt. He also said that the tech sector hasn't been reaping the benefits from the success of the American economy.
Given the somewhat-contradictory views of the Trump team, we decided to check out the White House economic stats and see just how the data stack up.
First, and perhaps most famously, the unemployment rate is coming in at 3.7%, an all-time low since 2001. But the new jobs being created are low paying, with median wages actually dropping a little over $1 since Trump took office.
Forbes recently rounded up job growth in February, and found that full-time jobs are up just 0.5%, down from December's 0.9% increase. Median earnings dropped $24 to $51,200.
Quartz rounds up the often-contradictory employment numbers, and finds that 6.2 million jobs have been added since Trump took office. And at least 12 million jobs have been created over the last 23 months.
Mnuchin also said on "Varney & Co." that the U.S. economic picture looks "good for a long time," and that it's "pushing forward."
But another body of data is decidedly more positive. The S&P 500 Index is at a record high, just below all-time highs.
Markets are also paying close attention to the monthly jobs report. Economists from Euler Hermes recently confirmed that this January marked the longest streak of consecutive monthly job growth since the late 1990s.
But when CNBC asked at the end of January whether the stock market is still in danger of a market crash, Euler Hermes once again broke out data that showed the stock market has gone years since it dropped below its 200-day moving average for the first time.
As for the national debt, according to the U.S. Treasury Department, total federal government debt crossed the $21 trillion mark for the first time ever in January.
And yet, even the credit rating agencies are starting to blink. Moody's Investors Service just revised its outlook on the U.S. government's credit to stable, saying if more revenue starts rolling in, "the Aaa rating may be removed".
This begs the question: If the U.S. economy is doing great and there's a fiscal surplus, why do investors remain nervous about the debt?
Perhaps the answer lies in the president's recent tweets. In a February 6 tweet, Trump said the U.S. economy is in "turmoil" and that a recession is imminent. And in December, he said the stock market is "now flat."
The bottom line is this: Even if the numbers look great now, what if we hit a recession? And if we do, will the financial markets be able to withstand what will likely be an epic response? We'll find out.