The Small Business Administration released a new study today. “The Impact of Regulatory Costs on Small Firms,” by Nicole V. Crain and W. Mark Crain, updates previous studies of the same title from 2005 and 2001.
From the introduction (p.6):
The findings in this report indicate that in 2008, U.S. federal government regulations cost an estimated $1.75 trillion, an amount equal to 14 percent of U.S. national income. When combined with U.S. federal tax receipts, which equaled 21 percent of national income in 2008, these two costs of federal government programs in 2008 consumed 35 percent of national income.
And keep in mind that those numbers are for 2008. With government spending now closer to 24 percent of GDP, the federal government’s current share of the economy is around 38 percent.
State and local spending and regulations, of course, cost extra.