Politifact Virginia: Rep. Connolly on Dow Jones average

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) – Have you checked your 401-k lately? The stock market has made a big turnaround. Democrats would like to give President Obama the credit. Listen to what Congressman Gerry Connolly said last month about where the stock market stands.  

"We've doubled the stock market from where we started when he was sworn into office -- Bush had gotten it down to 6,500. It's double that today," said Rep. Gerry Connolly.

According to Politifact Virginia, Connolly's claim sounds good.. But it is "mostly false". 

Let's take a look at the numbers: on the day President Obama took office, the Dow Jones was at a little more than 8,000 points. On the day Connolly made that statement it had gone up to just under 13,000...a big jump but well short of the "doubling" he claimed.

But Connolly's office actually starts the clock at March 6th, 2009-- well after the president had been in office. At that time the Dow was hovering around 6,500, and has since gone up almost 100%.

But even if you gave Connolly some lee-way on the time, it is hard to ignore the fact that the stock market fell in the first seven weeks of President Obama's administration.

The Obama administration doesn't want to get blamed for that. It just wants the credit now that things are much better. According to Politifact Reporter Sean Gorman, presidents get too much of the blame and too much of the credit.  

"Economists will often say that who gets credit and who gets the blame is more of a political exercise than kind of any evidence one way or an another that a president's policies have led to the performance of the market," said Gorman.

You can see all the information behind this week's Politifact Virginia report on their web site, www.politifactvirginia.com. 

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