George W Bush

January 20, 2001 – January 19, 2009

Last updated: March 5th, 2021

Texas Governor George W. Bush, the son of former US president George H. W. Bush, was president from 2001 – 2009. He inherited an economy in contraction from the previous stock market highs of the NASDAQ bubble, and cut taxes in 2001 and 2003.

The 9/11 attacks in 2001 were major issues of Bush’s presidency. The economy also fell into a recession at the end of his second term caused by the subprime mortgage crisis leading to a credit crunch and Lehman Brothers and Bear Stearns bankruptcies.

Summary of George W Bush’s performance

Below is a table summarizing George W Bush's cumulative and annualized performance across all the metrics we track. These are for the entirety of George W Bush's term.

IndicatorCumulative Gain/Loss
NASDAQ-44.80%
DOW-21.78%
S&P-36.68%
Job Growth1.02%
GDP Growth14.62%

Key Policies
  • Doubled defense spending (2001 – 2008)

  • Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act (June 2001)
  • Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act (May 2003)

Key Events
  • 9/11 Terrorist Attacks (Sept 2001)

  • Second Gulf War (Mar 2003)
  • The Great Recession (Dec 2007)

George W Bush's stock market performance

Under George W Bush’s presidency, the S&P 500 lost 36.68%, the NASDAQ lost 44.80% and the Dow Jones lost 21.78%. Annualized, the S&P 500 lost 5.55%, the NASDAQ lost 7.16% and the Dow Jones lost 3.03%

Here is George W Bush’s cumulative stock market performance broken out by term.

IndicatorCumulative End of Term 1Cumulative End of Term 2
NASDAQ-23.98%-44.80%
DOW0.39%-21.78%
S&P-10.92%-36.68%

Stock Performance Chart

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Bush GDP growth performance
During George W Bush’s presidency, the GDP gained 14.62%. That translates annually as GDP gained 1.73%.

Here is Bush’s cumulative GDP growth performance broken out by term.

IndicatorCumulative End of Term 1Cumulative End of Term 2
GDP Growth11.71%14.62%

GDP Performance Chart

Bush jobs growth performance
During George W Bush’s presidency, payrolls grew 1.02% cumulatively. That translated to an annualized jobs groth of 0.13%.

Here is Bush’s cumulative job growth performance broken out by term.

IndicatorCumulative End of Term 1Cumulative End of Term 2
Job Growth0.06%1.02%

Job Growth Performance Chart
How we calculate President Bush's data for Facts First?

We capture the data as soon as it’s available to us – stock market data after daily market close, jobs data once a month and GDP data once a quarter. After verifying the raw data, we then calculate updated cumulative and annualized performance data for the current president (the data for previous presidents have been calculated and verified in advance).

Some metrics are measured daily (like stock market performance), monthly (like jobs growth) and quarterly (like GDP growth). We start measurement of performance for a president from the first full time period after their inauguration. For stock market performance, it is the first stock market day in office. For jobs growth, it’s either first full calendar month in office (so if you are inaugurated in the middle of January, the first full month is February). This ensures a consistent starting point across all presidencies.

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