News / USA

US Jobless Rate Falls to Two-Year Low

Bureau of Labor Statistics Commissioner Keith Hall testifies before the Joint Economic Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, April 1, 2011
Bureau of Labor Statistics Commissioner Keith Hall testifies before the Joint Economic Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, April 1, 2011

Multimedia

More signs that the world's largest economy is on the mend: The U.S. Labor Department reported private employers hired more than 200,000 new workers last month. That sent the nation's unemployment rate to 8.8 percent, the lowest level in two years.

The job picture is looking brighter for many Americans. Private employers get much of the credit, adding a net total of 216,000 jobs in March.  
Labor Statistics Commissioner Keith Hall said it is the second straight month the economy has added more than 200,000 jobs.

"For more than two months we've had pretty steady job growth. It's been around 135,000, 140,00 a month. In the last two months, looks like we may be getting an acceleration in job growth, which would be a good sign."

The nation's unemployment rate is now 8.8 percent; down from 9.8 percent in December - the sharpest four-month drop in nearly 30 years.

At a UPS shipping facility in Maryland on Friday, President Barack Obama joked that the better than expected job numbers mean more packages to deliver. But he struck a more serious note, saying his administration's top priority remains job creation.

"And I will not be satisfied until every American who wants a good job can find one, and every American gets a shot at the American dream.  That's what we're focused on, that's what we're fighting for."

At the New York Stock Exchange, investors were also focused on the job numbers - sending stock prices sharply higher. With domestic manufacturing and exports rising, analysts say companies are likely to pick up the pace of hiring this year.

Boeing CEO Jim McNerney said his company is among those planning to expand. "Engaged, well-deployed multinationals, I think you are going to see adding more jobs, including the Boeing company. We are going to add a few thousand jobs this year basically to fund growth on the commercial side of our business."

Republicans welcomed the positive job numbers. But House speaker John Boehner said the administration's  policies are adding to the economic uncertainty. "It's clear that we need to cut spending. We need to stop unnecessary regulations, end the threat of tax hikes and pass the trade bills that are out there. Those are the pillars of the Republican plan that will actually create jobs in America."

Despite steady job growth, some 13.5 million Americans are still out of work. That's almost twice as many as before the recession began in December 2007.

You May Like

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

Video Secret Service Chief Under Fire for White House Security Breach

Julia Pierson faces tough questions from lawmakers after recent intrusion at White House, says: 'It is clear that our security plan was not executed properly' More

Frustrated, Liberian Students Want Ebola Fight Role

Thousands have volunteered to go to counties, rural villages to talk to people in their language about deadly virus 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.
Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihadi
X
Mahi Ramakrishnan
September 30, 2014 2:16 PM
Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Iran's Rouhani Skeptical on Syria Strikes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed skepticism Friday that U.S.-led airstrikes in Iraq and Syria could crush Islamic State militants. From New York, VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports the president was also hopeful that questions about Iran’s nuclear program could be resolved soon.
Video

Video US House Speaker: Congress Should Debate Authorization Against IS

As wave after wave of U.S. airstrikes target Islamic State militants, the speaker of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives says he would be willing to call Congress back into session to debate a formal, broad authorization for the use of military force. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington, where legislators left town 10 days ago for a seven-week recess.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Video

Video Ebola Robs Liberians of Chance to Say Good-Bye to Loved Ones

In Liberia, where Ebola has killed more than 1,500 people, authorities have worked hard to convince people to allow specialized burial teams to take away dead bodies. But these safety measures, while necessary, make it hard for people to say good bye to their loved ones. VOA's Anne Look reports on the tragedy from Liberia.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid