T he Atlantic magazine recently named Northwestern University economist Robert Gordon’s paper on U.S. growth The Most Depressing Economic Idea of 2012.
That’s probably true, and not as sensationalist as it might seem.
In Is U.S. Economic Growth Over? Faltering Innovation Confronts The Six Headwinds, Gordon’s thesis is that even if innovation were to continue into the future at the rate of the two decades before 2007, the U.S. faces six headwinds that are in the process of dragging long-term growth to half or less of the 1.9 percent annual rate experienced between 1860 and 2007. These include demography, education, inequality, globalization, energy/environment, and the overhang of consumer and government debt.
Robert Gordon’s Ted Talk is a brilliant summary of his view:
Interested in more from Robert Gordon? Register for BCA’s 2013 New York Investment Conference where we are delighted to welcome Mr. Gordon as a guest speaker.