News / Economy

Obama Welcomes Drop in US Jobless Rate

U.S. President Barack Obama says a small decline in the nation's unemployment rate is welcome news, but he wants the economic recovery to build more momentum. The jobless rate dipped one-tenth of a percent in February, to 8.9 percent.

Mr. Obama told high school students in Miami, Florida Friday there is reason to be optimistic about the direction of the nation’s economy. "This morning we learned that the unemployment rate fell to its lowest level in nearly two years. Our economy added another 222,000 jobs in the private sector. That is the 12th straight month of private sector job growth," he said.

But the president reminded the audience that the economic recovery is just beginning. "So our economy has now added 1.5 million private sector jobs over the last year. And that is progress. But we need to keep building on that momentum," he said.

The loss of 30,000 state and local government jobs in February meant a net gain of 192,000 jobs. But the addition of 222,000 private sector jobs was the biggest gain since last April.

The decline in the jobless rate from 9.8 percent in November to 8.9 percent in February is the biggest three-month drop since 1983.

House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner, in a written statement, also applauded the lower jobless numbers. But he blamed the Obama administration’s 2009 economic stimulus legislation for feeding what he called a "government spending binge" that Boehner says is blocking the recovery.

One of the president’s top economic advisers, Austan Goolsbee, called the overall trend of the last few months’ economic numbers encouraging. But he cautioned against reading too much into any one monthly report, and said there is considerable work to do to replace the nearly 8 million jobs lost in the recession.

Many economists agree that the growing number of new jobs is a sign that confidence in the economic recovery is building. But some warn that the unemployment rate could go back up as more people who had given up looking for work start trying again.

President Obama visited Miami Central High School to promote his initiatives to improve American education, which he says are crucial to strengthening the U.S. economy. He was joined by former Florida state governor Jeb Bush, who is a Republican and the brother of Mr. Obama's predecessor, former President George W. Bush.

You May Like

Uganda Court Annuls Anti-Gay Law

Court says law was passed in parliament without enough members present for a full quorum More

Multimedia Thailand Makes Efforts to Improve Conditions for Migrant Laborers

In Thailand, its not uncommon for parents to bring their children to work; one company, in-collaboration with other organizations, address safety concerns More

In Indonesia, Jihad Video Raises Concern

Video calls on Indonesians to join Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, ISIL More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
In Thailand, Some Efforts to Improve Conditions For Migrant Laborersi
X
Steve Herman
August 01, 2014 6:22 PM
Thailand has been facing increasing international scrutiny as a hub of human trafficking and slave labor. Some of the kingdom’s companies are striving to improve working conditions, especially for the millions of migrant laborers from surrounding countries. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Bangkok takes a look at one initiative for children at construction sites
Video

Video In Thailand, Some Efforts to Improve Conditions For Migrant Laborers

Thailand has been facing increasing international scrutiny as a hub of human trafficking and slave labor. Some of the kingdom’s companies are striving to improve working conditions, especially for the millions of migrant laborers from surrounding countries. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Bangkok takes a look at one initiative for children at construction sites
Video

Video Public Raises its Voice on Power Plant Pollution

In the United States, proposed rules to cut pollution from the nation’s 600 coal-fired power plants are generating a heated debate. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, charged with writing and implementing the plan, has already received 300,000 written comments. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, another 1,600 people are lining up this week at EPA headquarters and at satellite offices around the country to give their testimony in person.
Video

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.
Video

Video China Investigates Powerful Former Security Chief

The public in China is welcoming the Communist Party's decision to investigate one of the country's once most powerful politicians, former domestic security chief Zhou Yongkang. Analysts say the move by President Xi Jinping is not only an effort to win more support for the party, but an essential step to furthering much needed economic reforms and removing those who would stand in the way of change. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.
Video

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.

AppleAndroid

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.7305
JPY
USD
101.53
GBP
USD
0.5830
CAD
USD
1.0656
INR
USD
60.075

Rates may not be current.