ECONOMY WEEKLY: WEEK OF MAY 31, 2010

Creating Jobs and Growing the Economy

For Immediate Release:

June 4, 2010

Contact:

Katie Grant
Stephanie Lundberg
(202) 225 - 3130


“Consistent with the rise in average weekly hours, the number of full-time workers rose for the fourth month in a row and the number of people working part-time for economic reasons declined sharply.”
– Christina Romer, Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers, 6/4/2010
 
Today, the Department of Labor released the unemployment report for May showing that the policies adopted by President Obama and the Democratic Congress continue to help create jobs and grow the economy. With many of the jobs created in May a result of the Census, Democrats understand that we still have a long way to go to replace the nearly 8 million jobs lost during a decade of declining economic security for the middle class under President Bush. That is why job creation continues to be the top priority for Democrats.

Economy Highlights:

  • The Department of Labor reported that the unemployment rate fell for 90% of the nation’s metropolitan areas: “Unemployment rates fell in April for more than 90 percent of the nation's 372 largest metro areas as hiring picked up around the country. The Labor Department says the jobless rate dropped in 346 areas last month. It rose in only 12 and remained flat in 14. That's much better than March, when unemployment fell in 257 areas and rose in 89.”   [Associated Press6/2/2010]
  • U.S. service industries expanded in May for the fifth consecutive month to the highest level since December 2007, “showing the recovery is broadening and generating jobs. The Institute for Supply Management’s index of non- manufacturing businesses, which makes up almost 90 percent of the economy, held at 55.4 for a third month. Readings above 50 signal expansion. The group’s employment gauge climbed to the highest level since the recession began in December 2007.”  [Bloomberg6/3/2010]
  • In more positive news for the economy, “Orders placed with U.S. factories rose in April for an eighth month, a sign of strength in manufacturing at the start of the second quarter. The 1.2 percent increase in bookings followed a revised 1.7 percent gain in March that was larger than previously estimated…”  [Bloomberg6/3/2010]
  • The Department of Labor reported that the economy created 431,000 jobs in May, including 411,000 jobs created for the Census, and the unemployment rate dropped to 9.7%: “Employers added 431,000 nonfarm jobs nationwide in May, the biggest increase in a single month in a decade…. The unemployment rate fell to 9.7 percent nationwide, from 9.9 percent in April…. The figures for May represented the fifth consecutive month that payrolls have risen…”  [New York Times6/4/2010]
  • According to Autodata Corp, U.S. auto sales rose for the seventh consecutive month in May: “Sales of cars and light trucks jumped 19% in May, to 1.1 million vehicles…. The annualized sales pace for the month was 11.68 million vehicles. That's up from the year-ago figure of 9.86 million and April's 11.2 million rate. General Motors Co., Ford Motor Co., Honda Motor Co. and Nissan Motor Co. all reported sales increases ranging from 17% to 24%. But Chrysler, which has been struggling to boost sales since its bankruptcy reorganization last year, outpaced them all, reporting a rise of 33%. The company sold 104,819 vehicles in May, the first time in 14 months it surpassed the 100,000 mark.”  [Wall Street Journal6/3/2010]
  • The National Association of Realtors reported that U.S. home sales rose in April: “producing an increase in the index for the third consecutive month…. The Pending Home Sales Index climbed from an upwardly revised 104.6 in March to 110.9 in April…. The forward-looking economic indicator was 22.4 percent higher than April 2009.”  [UPI6/2/2010]

Recovery Highlight:

  • Vice President Biden visited the Brooklyn Bridge – recipient of a $30 million Recovery Act grant from the Department of Transportation – to discuss how Recovery Act investments are creating jobs and improving infrastructure in New York and across the country.  “New York City says the Recovery Act’s $30 million investment in the project will create 150 jobs, generate economic activity and allow New York City to fund other critical infrastructure projects they otherwise would have eliminated or postponed…. [T]he Recovery Act has funded nearly 1,300 bridge projects and 14,000 transportation across the United States to-date.”  [White House6/3/2010]
 
 
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