September 11, 2019

Mulvaney updates CUs on economy, administration at Caucus

Mick Mulvaney shared an update on the economy and administration efforts at NAFCU's Congressional Caucus Tuesday.  (Photo by Greg Dohler)

Mick Mulvaney, President Donald Trump's acting chief of staff and director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), offered his insights into the economy and likelihood of a recession, as well as administration efforts to reduce regulations at NAFCU's Congressional Caucus Tuesday.

As a credit union champion, NAFCU has a strong working relationship with Mulvaney. The association has met with him many times – most recently in November while he served as CFPB acting director – and he has regularly attended NAFCU's Caucus.

"Thank you for what you do," Mulvaney told the crowd, also noting that South Carolina – his home state – has more credit union members than registered voters. "… What you do is critical in rural and poor areas of this country … Credit unions are the lifeblood of smaller towns and rural areas. What you do provides a valuable service and our country wouldn't be as great as it is without you."

Discussing the economy, Mulvaney explored job creation and the unemployment rate, GDP, productivity and the quit rate. He noted that while many dubbed the most recent jobs report as "bad" with 130,000 jobs created, it was actually significantly higher than what the previous administration predicted would be created in August 2019. Since Trump took office, roughly 6 million jobs have been created, Mulvaney said, and 1.6 million people have reentered the job market.

He also highlighted the benefits of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act in boosting productivity by encouraging businesses to invest in themselves. A credit union representative during a Q&A with Mulvaney also shared how the tax bill has given more money back to consumers, further supporting economic growth.

The quit rate – which Mulvaney said is his favorite number to look at – represents the number of people who have willingly left their job. "It's one of the best measures of consumer confidence," Mulvaney said, as it shows that people trust in themselves enough to start their own business or move to a new city.

In addition, Mulvaney gave an update on the Trump administration, specifically touching on its deregulatory efforts. While at the CFPB, Mulvaney worked to reduce regulatory burdens – something which he also prioritized while serving in Congress. Responding to a question from an attendee about the CFPB's current approach, Mulvaney said he has "the highest confidence" in current Director Kathy Kraninger – who spoke at Caucus Monday – and staff who have significant knowledge on the topics the bureau deals with.

NAFCU's Congressional Caucus ends today. See today's lineup of speakers and get updates through NAFCU Today or #NAFCUCaucus on Twitter.