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11 Months of Job Growth

11 Mos of Job Growth

Last week, the Bureau of Labor and Statistics released the latest jobs report, which detailed 257,000 jobs gained in January, 2015,  Wages are also on the rise. The positive numbers indicate the strongest 3-month job gain in 17 years and the latest report brings good news of a strong economic recovery.

The White House released the following statement from Jason Furman, Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers:

“With today’s strong employment report, we have now seen eleven straight months of job gains above 200,000—the first time that has happened in nearly two decades. We are also seeing nominal wage growth exceed the latest inflation readings, but additional steps are still needed to overcome the long-standing challenges affecting wages and family incomes. America is poised for another strong year, and so it is critical to avoid brinksmanship and unnecessary austerity, and instead to make investments in our future growth.

That’s why earlier this week the President released a budget proposal that will help hardworking families make ends meet, while boosting America’s productivity and giving workers the tools they need to secure well-paying jobs in the 21st-century global economy.”

What are the main points in this report:

  • The private sector has added 11.8 million jobs over 59 straight months of job growth, extending the longest streak on record.
  • The labor force participation rate rose to 62.95 in January, and has been relatively stable, on balance, since October, 2013 — during which time the unemployment rate has fallen by 1.5%. The recent stabilization in the participation rate suggests that all of the decline in the unemployment rate over the past 15 months has been due to employment gains.
  • Nominal average hourly earnings for private production and non-supervisory workers have risen 2 % over the last 12 months — implying real wage growth of around 1%, but still below rates needed to overcome the long-standing challenge in this area.
  • Consistent with a general pattern of upward revisions during the recovery, job growth in November and December was revised up substantially, and the benchmark revision to March, 2014, added 91,000 jobs (on a seasonally adjusted basis).
  • Job growth in a number of industries diverged from recent trends in January.

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A $1 Billion State Budget Surplus

Minnesota’s economy continues to strengthen:

Thanks to forward-looking management, the State of Minnesota has a $1 billion surplus.

And, Minnesota’s unemployment rate of 3.6% is the 5th lowest in the nation. It’s also the lowest level we’ve seen in nearly 14 years with the state adding 222,000 new jobs over the last 5 years.

Here’s a link to the full report.


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2015 State of the Union Speech

image001As the President prepares to deliver tonight’s State of the Union – Republicans face a dilemma: do they pull a Mitch McConnell and try to claim credit for the economic recovery that President Obama has presided over, or do they bemoan the progress we’ve made and push trickle down economic policies that benefit the most fortunate and big corporations while leaving everyone else with the bill.

No matter which door they choose, here’s what we know – time and again, Republican economic doom and gloom has never come to fruition – in fact, just the opposite:

  • Unemployment rate: 5.6%, lowest in 6 years
  • Economic Growth: Fastest economic growth in more than a decade
  • Stocks: Fourth-longest bull market since World War II
  • Gas Prices: Average price today $2.14/gallon
  • Job growth: 11.2 million over 58 straight months; 2014 was the best year for job growth since 1999

These are the facts — Republican doomsday predictions couldn’t have been more off. And while it’s likely the GOP will continue trying to obstruct progress, President Obama and Democrats will keep fighting every day to build on this progress and continue growing the economy for all Americans – tonight, and for the years to come.


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Sharp 2014 Growth Proves Right-Wing Predictions Flat Wrong

On January 3, 2015, Joe Conason posted the above-titled article on the National Memo website.

What the Republicans have been saying:

  • Prominent figures on the American right “from John Boehner and Mitch McConnell to Rush Limbaugh, George Will, and Sean Hannity, along with every right-wing think tank and media outlet – have warned the public that the tax, health care, and spending policies of the Obama administration were killing jobs and wrecking the economy.
  • The Republican party has enacted an agenda of political obstruction and austerity policies did much to harm the economy and employment, especially when they drove debate over the budget and debt ceiling toward the brink of default – and insisted on enormous cuts in spending by the federal, state, and local governments.
    • As recently as last spring, the Republican line recited by Will and Limbaugh — and parroted by Boehner and McConnell — was that Obamacare would surely destroy at least 2 million jobs.”
    • Last February, Boehner’s office tweeted that the Affordable Care Act is “expected to destroy 2.3 million jobs.”
    • On the radio, Limbaugh barked that the implementation of health care reform would cost “2.5 million jobs, minimum,” which he called “a literal tragedy for the country.”
    • In an editorial, the Wall Street Journal agreed that Obamacare is “a job destroyer.”
    • And on Fox News, Charles Krauthammer gloated that this White House unemployment debacle would be “emblazoned on the tombstone of liberalism.


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U.S. added 214,000 jobs in October

Even though the results of this month’s election show that people aren’t necessarily feeling the fact that the economy is continuing to strengthen, it is. The Washington Post reports on November 7, 2014, that the nation added 214,000 jobs last month. And, that the jobless rate has fallen to 5.8%

That’s the healthiest pace of hiring the nation has seen in 8 years.  And, the unemployment rate is the lowest it’s been since July, 2008.


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