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Economists Grade The Obama Administration

From the Journal's indispensable Phil Izzo--let's just say not quite as good as Obama's law school grades:

A majority of the 49 economists polled said they were dissatisfied with the administration's economic policies.

On average, they gave the president a grade of 59 out of 100, and although there was a broad range of marks, 42% of respondents rated Mr. Obama below 60. Mr. Geithner received an average grade of 51. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke scored better, with an average 71. ...

The economists' negative ratings mark a turnaround in opinion. In December, before Mr. Obama took office, three-quarters of respondents said the incoming administration's economic team was better than the departing Bush team. However, Mr. Geithner's latest marks are lower than the average grade of 57 that former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson received in January.

My guess is that economists as a group (particularly non-academic economists) skew right-ward politically. Still, it's hard to argue that there's something out there to merit good grades, even if a lot of it isn't the administration's fault.

One other interesting detail. Despite this presumed political orientation, it appears (though I can't find the overall numbers) that most buy into, you know, Keynesianism:

Economists were divided over whether the $787 billion economic-stimulus package passed last month is enough. Some 43% said the U.S. will need another stimulus package on the order of nearly $500 billion. Others were skeptical of the need for stimulus at all.

--Noam Scheiber