Statement from U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross on Q1 2020 GDP Advance Estimate

Today, the Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) released the advance estimate for gross domestic product (GDP) for the first quarter of 2020, finding that real gross domestic product contracted at an annual rate of 4.8 percent.

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross issued the following statement in response:

“Today’s GDP numbers are weak, but in line with expectations as a result of the COVID-19-driven disruptions to daily lives at home and around the globe that have rocked global markets and supply chains. We continue to have the most resilient economy in the world, driven by innovative and hardworking Americans who have shown that they are willing to make the needed sacrifices to defeat this invisible enemy.

The President has taken bold action to leverage the expertise and resources of the entire Nation in this fight. Congress has confronted the seriousness of this challenge with trillions of dollars in relief funding for those impacted by the virus, establishing a firm footing for a swift and strong American comeback. When this chapter ends, America will be both stronger and healthier than ever because of the President’s decisive and timely actions.”

Proclamation on World Intellectual Property Day, 2020

Note: This proclamation was originally published on the Proclamations webpage of the White House website on April 24, 2020. 

Our Nation’s history is defined by discovery, ingenuity, and innovation. Americans are known for their resourcefulness and ability to find solutions to a wide range of challenges, including the development of technologies that advance our security, health, and prosperity. This resourcefulness has been a driving force of economic growth and human development since the founding of our Nation, and our future depends on the continued protection of our intellectual property. On World Intellectual Property Day, we renew our resolve to protect and secure the works and innovations of American artists, inventors, and other creators who continually push the boundaries of human knowledge and understanding.

Our Founding Fathers recognized the vital role that intellectual property plays in society and in supporting a robust economy. The Intellectual Property Clause of the Constitution reflects their understanding that laws must be in place to “promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries.” More than two centuries later, we remain committed to this idea, upholding and strengthening an intellectual property system that encourages greater American innovation and advances our global competitiveness.

My Administration is building on our Nation’s history of securing intellectual property rights. In the United States, intellectual property-intensive industries account for nearly one-third of all employment and approximately 40 percent of our country’s gross domestic product, an estimated $6.6 trillion. To support these industries, in January of this year I signed the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) into law, replacing the outdated and unbalanced North American Free Trade Agreement. USMCA furthers my Administration’s pro-growth agenda by establishing ground-breaking protections for trade secrets, strengthening border security, and enhancing trademark, copyright, and patent provisions. These are the most comprehensive intellectual property standards ever included in a free trade agreement. Additionally, earlier this year I signed an Executive Order on Ensuring Safe and Lawful E-Commerce for United States Consumers, Businesses, Government Supply Chains, and Intellectual Property Rights Holders, which is aimed at finding improved ways to protect intellectual property rights holders from an increasing amount of counterfeit and pirated goods marketed online.

The importance of intellectual property has never been more apparent than it is now, as we continue the ongoing battle against the coronavirus. To respond to this national and international emergency, the Federal, State, and local Governments have partnered with the private sector to develop new and powerful tools to combat the spread of the virus and provide care to those in need, focusing every available resource on the fight against the invisible enemy. Relying on strong intellectual property protections, these industries are able to act boldly to invent new tests, begin developing experimental treatments and vaccines, and rapidly produce and reengineer medical equipment to help win this war. These efforts are saving tens of thousands of lives and reflect the unrivaled power of American industry and innovation.

This month, we pay tribute to our Nation’s long history of ingenuity and advancement, and we recommit to protecting, promoting, and prioritizing a business and economic environment that supports those who carry on this legacy. The pioneering spirit of these artists, authors, inventors, and other creators has improved our lives and the lives of millions of people around the world, and will continue to propel us toward a better future.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim April 26, 2020, as World Intellectual Property Day. I encourage Americans to observe this day to celebrate the benefits of intellectual property to our economy and our country.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-fourth day of April, in the year of our Lord two thousand twenty, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-fourth.

DONALD J. TRUMP

USPTO announces extension of certain patent and trademark-related timing deadlines

USPTO announces extension of certain patent and trademark-related timing deadlines under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) today announced extensions to the time allowed to file certain patent and trademark-related documents and to pay certain required fees. These actions are an exercise of temporary authority provided to the USPTO by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) signed by President Trump on March 27. 

“Inventors and entrepreneurs are the lifeblood of our economy, and we recognize that many of them are having difficulty as a result of COVID-19,” said Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office Andrei Iancu. “As a result, we are working to provide as much relief as possible to our stakeholders, consistent with our ability to maintain the USPTO’s fee-funded operations. We are especially mindful of the outsized impact on small businesses and independent inventors, and we have provided additional relief for these groups. Ultimately, our goal is to ensure not only that inventors and entrepreneurs can weather the storm, but that they can also hit the ground running once it passes.” 

The USPTO has made operational adjustments to keep its employees and the public safe as it remains open for business. In-person meetings, such as hearings and examiner interviews, are being conducted virtually by phone and video until further notice.

SBA & Treasury Begin Unprecedented Public-Private Mobilization Effort to Distribute Funds

Following President Trump’s signing of the historic Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza and Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin today announced that the SBA and Treasury Department have initiated a robust mobilization effort of banks and other lending institutions to provide small businesses with the capital they need.

The CARES Act establishes a new $349 billion Paycheck Protection Program. The Program will provide much-needed relief to millions of small businesses so they can sustain their businesses and keep their workers employed.

“This unprecedented public-private partnership is going to assist small businesses with accessing capital quickly. Our goal is to position lenders as the single point-of-contact for small businesses – the application, loan processing, and disbursement of funds will all be administered at the community level,” said Administrator Carranza. “Speed is the operative word; applications for the emergency capital can begin as early as this week, with lenders using their own systems and processes to make these loans. We remain committed to supporting our nation’s more than 30 million small businesses and their employees, so that they can continue to be the fuel for our nation’s economic engine.”

“This legislation provides small business job retention loans to provide eight weeks of payroll and certain overhead to keep workers employed,” said Secretary Mnuchin. “Treasury and the Small Business Administration expect to have this program up and running by April 3rd so that businesses can go to a participating SBA 7(a) lender, bank, or credit union, apply for a loan, and be approved on the same day.  The loans will be forgiven as long as the funds are used to keep employees on the payroll and for certain other expenses.”

The new loan program will help small businesses with their payroll and other business operating expenses. It will provide critical capital to businesses without collateral requirements, personal guarantees, or SBA fees – all with a 100% guarantee from SBA. All loan payments will be deferred for six months. Most importantly, the SBA will forgive the portion of the loan proceeds that are used to cover the first eight weeks of payroll costs, rent, utilities, and mortgage interest.

The Paycheck Protection Program is specifically designed to help small businesses keep their workforce employed. Visit SBA.gov/Coronavirus for more information on the Paycheck Protection Program.

Statement from U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross on Q4 and Annual 2019 GDP: Economy Grows 2.3% in 2019

Today, the Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) released the fourth quarter and annual gross domestic product (GDP) numbers. The Bureau found that the real gross domestic product increased at an annual rate of 2.1 percent in the fourth quarter and 2.3 percent for all of 2019, continuing to beat expectations.

“Since the beginning of this Administration, critics have predicted doom and gloom for the American economy,” said Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. “They were wrong then, and they are wrong now. President Trump continues to unleash incredible growth in the American economy despite the effects of Boeing’s problems with the 737 MAX and the General Motors’ strike. GDP for 2019 is more great news for the American economy and is even better than what today’s numbers show due to those two special factors. Beyond this, Americans continue to experience tremendous increases in employment and wages that prime 2020 for further economic gains. When you add in the benefits of USMCA, the Phase One Deal with China, the two trade deals with Japan, and the re-working of the free trade agreement with South Korea, America is back and competing on the world stage.”

The GDP continues to beat performance predictions before the 2016 election, and there was other good news in the BEA report:

  • The U.S. has the largest GDP of any country in the world, and it continues to grow at a sustained rate. U.S. GDP reached an all-time high in 2019 of $21.43 trillion.
  • The growth of the goods GDP rose by an impressive 4.7 percent, while services was at 1.7 percent.
  • Consumer spending increased by 2.6 percent last year and spending on durable goods surged by 4.7 percent in 2019.
  • Personal income reached an all-time high of $18.6 trillion, up from $17.8 trillion in 2018.
  • The personal savings rate increased to 8 percent for the year, with Americans saving $1.31 trillion in 2019, up from $1.21 trillion in 2018.
  • The long period of massive import surges of goods is finally abating. For the year, imports of goods rose by only 0.2 percent, the lowest yearly increase since 2009.

BEA Reports 17 of 22 Industry Groups Contributed to the 2.1 Percent Increase in Real GDP in 3rd Quarter.

Nondurable goods manufacturing; retail trade; and professional, scientific, and technical services were the leading contributors to the increase in U.S. economic growth in the third quarter of 2019, according to gross domestic product (GDP) by industry statistics released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Both private services- and goods-producing industries contributed to the increase; the government sector increased slightly. Overall, 17 of 22 industry groups contributed to the 2.1 percent increase in real GDP in the third quarter.

Nondurable goods manufacturing increased 10.1 percent in the third quarter, after decreasing 0.3 percent in the second quarter.
Retail trade increased 8.2 percent, after increasing 0.2 percent.
Professional, scientific, and technical services increased 5.6 percent, after increasing 7.4 percent.
“In the 3rd quarter of last year, retail and wholesale trade fueled the continuing economic resurgence. With growth in 17 of 22 sectors, American Industry continues to thrive thanks to the pro-growth policies of the Trump Administration,” said Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.

Presidential Delegation to Switzerland to attend the World Economic Forum

WASHINGTON– President Donald J. Trump announced the Presidential Delegation that will attend the World Economic Forum in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, from January 20 to January 24, 2020. Steven Mnuchin, Secretary of the Treasury, will lead the delegation.

Members of the Presidential Delegation:
Steven Mnuchin, Secretary of the Treasury (Lead)
Wilbur Ross, Secretary of Commerce
Eugene Scalia, Secretary of Labor
Elaine Chao, Secretary of Transportation
Robert Lighthizer, United States Trade Representative
Keith Krach, Under Secretary for Growth, Energy and the Environment, Department of State
Ivanka Trump, Assistant to the President and Advisor to the President
Jared Kushner, Assistant to the President and Senior Advisor to the President
Christopher Liddell, Assistant to the President and Deputy Chief of Staff for Policy Coordination

U.S. and World Populations on New Year’s Day

As the nation prepares to ring in the new year, the U.S. Census Bureau projects the U.S. population will be 330,222,422 on Jan. 1, 2020. This represents an increase of 1,991,085, or 0.61%, from New Year’s Day 2019. Since Census Day (April 1) 2010, the population has grown by 21,476,884 or 6.96%.

In January 2020, the United States is expected to experience one birth every eight seconds and one death every 11 seconds. Meanwhile, net international migration is expected to add one person to the U.S. population every 34 seconds. The combination of births, deaths and net international migration will increase the U.S. population by one person every 19 seconds.

The projected world population on Jan. 1, 2020, is 7,621,018,958, an increase of 77,684,873, or 1.03%, from New Year’s Day 2019. During January 2020, 4.3 births and 1.9 deaths are expected worldwide every second.

The Census Bureau’s U.S. and World Population Clock simulates real-time growth of the United States and world populations at  <www.census.gov/popclock>.

U.S. Economy Increases at a 2.1% Pace in the Third Quarter

Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased 2.1 percent in the third quarter of 2019, according to the “third” estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. The growth rate was unrevised from the “second” estimate released in November. In the second quarter, real GDP rose 2.0 percent.

GDP highlights

The third-quarter increase in real GDP reflected increases in consumer spending, government spending, housing investment, and exports, while business investment and inventory investment decreased. Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, increased.
The increase in consumer spending reflected increases in both goods (notably recreational goods and vehicles as well as food and beverages) and services (led by other services, notably personal care and legal services, as well as housing and utilities). The increase in government spending reflected increases in federal and in state and local government spending.

The decrease in business investment reflected decreases in structures (led by mining exploration, shafts, and wells) and in equipment (notably aircraft as well as computers and peripheral equipment).

Updates to GDP

While overall GDP growth was unrevised from the second estimate, upward revisions to consumer spending and business investment were offset by a downward revision to inventory investment.

Corporate profits from current production

Profits decreased 0.2 percent at a quarterly rate in the third quarter after increasing 3.8 percent in the second quarter. Corporate profits decreased 1.2 percent in the third quarter from one year ago.

Profits of domestic nonfinancial corporations decreased 0.5 percent after increasing 3.2 percent.
Profits of domestic financial corporations decreased 1.1 percent after increasing 0.6 percent.
Profits from the rest of the world increased 1.0 percent after increasing 7.7 percent.

Upcoming Event: Asian Financial Forum

Asian Financial Forum
January 13-14, 2020
Wan Chai, Hong Kong
Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre

  • Participate in Deal Flow Matchmaking Session’s, one-on-one meetings.
  • Meet project owners, private equity firms, investors, high net-worth individuals, and senior professionals from intermediaries and professional service providers.
  • Contact AICC: usa@aiccus.org
  • Contact U.S. Commercial Service: Peter Sexton