The Five Most Damning Facts About Federal Regulation, In One Infographic

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Guy Bentley Research Associate, Reason Foundation
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The Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) has released a stunning infographic illustrating the true costs to the U.S. economy from federal regulations and red tape.

CEI draws on their extensive report, Ten Thousand Commandments, which catalogues the size, scope, and cost of government regulations to the wider economy.

According to the report, the cost to the American people of government interference in the economy is staggering. In 2014, regulations hit the economy to the tune of $1.88 trillion thanks to lost productivity and rising prices. CEI arrived at the $1.88 trillion figure by analyzing the “best available government and private data on these costs.”

The scale of regulation has become so vast that if the cost could be made into one country’s gross domestic product, it would be the 10th largest economy in the world.

But it’s not just big businesses of Wall Street executives who are bearing the cost of Washington’s interference. According to CEI, regulations throughout the economy left the average household $14,976 worse off.

Competitive Enterprise Institute: Five Facts About Regulation

Five Infuriating Facts about Federal Regulation

The regulatory burden has gotten so bad that the cost of compliance is actually more than what the Internal Revenue Service is expected to collect in 2014 – $160 billion. The cost to the federal government’s departments of just enforcing the rules came to $59.5 billion.

CEI’s report shows that George W. Bush’s presidency was marked by a substantial increase in the regulatory burden, with his administration averaging 62 major new regulations every year.

But since 2008 the steady stream of regulation has become a torrent with President Barack Obama’s administration introducing 81 major regulations each and every year.

The tide of regulation has no prospect of receding anytime soon, with a new study by the American Action Forum concluding that two new regs set to be implemented under Dodd-Frank will cost Wall Street $6.7 billion.

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