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Obama: Positive 'Trend Is Clear' for Economy on the Upswing

4 years ago
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In upbeat remarks, President Obama said Saturday that the drop in joblessness and a batch of tax benefits extending into the new year show that "the trend is clear" for an economy on the upswing. He urged Congress not to "re-fight the battles of the past two years" that took time away from the struggle to get the economy back on track.

The president used his weekly address to talk up the tax relief enacted by Congress in a bipartisan compromise last month and to put a positive light on the December jobs numbers, which showed unemployment dropping from 9.8 percent to 9.4 percent. But the report also revealed disappointing growth in hiring by private sector employers last month --103,000 positions, not enough to keep up with new applicants in the job market.

"Now we know that these numbers can bounce around from month to month," Obama said. "But the trend is clear. We saw 12 straight months of private sector job growth -- the first time that's been true since 2006, The economy added 1.3 million jobs last year."

The president did not start his day with talk of taxes and employment figures. Rather his motorcade moved slowly through Washington's snowy streets so he could root for his daughter, Sasha. 9, in a basketball game at a recreation center.

But earlier, in his statement from White House, Obama reminded Americans that thanks to the agreement on extending Bush-era tax cuts into 2011, payroll taxes will go down, many families will benefit from a $1.000 child tax credit, and businesses will be able to write off most of their capital investments for one year.

"Our fundamental mission must be to accelerate hiring and growth..." he said. "I'm absolutely confident we will get there." He warned that "we can't re-fight battles of the past two years that distract us from the hard work of moving our economy forward. What we can't do is engage in the kinds of symbolic battles that so often consume Washington while the rest of America waits for us to solve problems."

Obama did not elaborate on what he meant by "symbolic battles," but many Democrats say that's what House Republicans are doing with their determination to repeal the new health care law. A House vote is expected Wednesday, even though it is highly unlikely a repealer can get through the Senate, where Democrats still hold the majority.

In the GOP weekly address, House Majority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.) vowed that "we will provide Americans with the mainstream solutions they were denied when Democrats used dubious procedural tactics to jam through the (health) bill along strictly partisan lines" last year. Cantor said "the best boost that Congress can provide to the economy is to send a credible signal that we are serious about cutting spending and eliminating job-killing regulations." But the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has said that rolling back the health law would actually cost money at this point because of the taxes, fees and promised Medicare savings already in place.

Watch Obama's address below.

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NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Ford Motor announced Monday it will add 7,000 new hourly and salaried jobs in the United States by the end of 2012.

this is One employer. I listened to the press announcement today and all 7000 jobs are in the US

January 10 2011 at 6:01 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Tell all those hard working people that can't find work about the 'positive trend,' - maybe they just weren't paying attention.

January 09 2011 at 10:41 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Adam K Waggoner

In times past tragedies have been used to silence opposing parties and promote agendas, which political accusations were later found to be false. Right now we need to pray for those effected instead of as a means to promote political agendas. If any legal action should be taken, it should be one of practical security. If need be, cut unnecessary federal programs so as to pay for more security.

January 09 2011 at 7:14 AM Report abuse -10 rate up rate down Reply
Rob & Kathy

Spin... 103,000 jobs created (mostly holiday temporary) and about 300,000 new unemployment claims. You don't have to be a math major to figure out this is not a net gain....

January 08 2011 at 9:50 PM Report abuse +7 rate up rate down Reply

The facts are the Dems took control of the House in 2007 and all has declined since and now that it was obvious they we going to lose it, things started turning around. With the change things have continued to improve. It is not surprising that the Dems would try to take credit, just like it wasn't surprising they would not except any of the blame for the recession.

January 08 2011 at 8:20 PM Report abuse +12 rate up rate down Reply

The Economy and Jobs can be fixed easy.. 19 Million Jobs await American Citizens... E-VERIFY .....Obama Knows this...

January 08 2011 at 8:10 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply

Obama Has not done anything at all while he has been our supposed President!!!!!
Economy is NOT getting better, We are still in a terrible recession. Just ask all the working class people like me.
Scrimping and scraping everyday to make ends meet, and living paycheck to paycheck hoping to have enough to pay our Bills. So do Not tell me that Obama has done anything at all to help out this miserable Economy that we are stuck in!!!!
Media needs to stop spreading lies and tell it how it is.
America is bankrupt and it is NOT getting any better!!!!!!!

January 08 2011 at 8:05 PM Report abuse +18 rate up rate down Reply

Considering the amount of jobs that have been lost to overseas outsourcing over the last twenty years, along with the millions of jobs that were cut during the past 3 years of the Great Recession, the 1.3 million jobs that the President is bragging about don't amount to squat and are not even enough to keep up with normal poulation increases. This hardly constitutes a "clear uptrend". It isn't even breakeven.
The fact is that neither of these parties really care about mainstream and middleclass America. Corporate revenues are up and Wall Street and Washington are happy...and the corporations will get tax breaks for their profits, even though they will use most of those profits to reinvest in overseas labor, plant, and equipment. And any remainder will go to dividend increases and executive bonuses, as always. Tax breaks and tax credits should only be given for documented reinvestment in American jobs. Period.

January 08 2011 at 3:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

It is near impossible for the middle class to get any help in this economic mess, and it is definitely getting worse!! How can the President say things are getting better? Where is he living? For over a year I have tried to refinance my house. Because it has lost so much of its value, that is not possible. Now, even though I have perfect credit and could finance a new house for under 4%, I am unable to lower my loans and still continue to pay PMI. When I went to the government website and later spoke to the money management people for help, I found out I make too much money for any program-you must understand at they do not consider car payments, insurance, phones etc. into the equations because they are luxuries. They wonder why people are walking away. I was recommended to short sale or give the house back-either will effect my credit. Don't they understand I want my good credit. All I want is a lower rate, but ALL parties prefer I just give up the house. Unbelievable.

January 08 2011 at 3:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Thanks to the Nov. election which sent Obama a message that government needs to get out of the way for job growth and to Republicans for keeping the taxes unchanged. Raising taxes never increases government revenues but destroys business. Business and job creation by business, not government is the engine of creating tax revenues. People out of work are consuming tax dollars. If Obama can get off his socialist horse and start thinking like a Republican there is hope. The stimulus package only created short term employment and not sustainable economic development. The only hope for America is to cut government expenditures while encouraging business with business friendly policies both of which are objectionable to democrats and liberals.

January 08 2011 at 3:05 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

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