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Friday, September 02, 2011

SBE Council Chief Economist on August Jobs Numbers and President's Speech

Raymond J. Keating, chief economist for the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council (SBE Council), released the following statement in response to the August employment data reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics:

"The August jobs numbers simply continued the long, frustrating story of a grossly under-performing economic recovery, and generally clueless policymaking.

"The payroll survey pointed to a mere gain of 17,000 in private payrolls in August, with the trend showing a dramatic slowdown in hiring over the past four months. Meanwhile, the household survey, which better captures start up and small business activity, reported the labor force up by 366,000 and employment up 331,000 in August. But that good news must be tempered by the reality that employment is still down by 237,000 from its 2011 high in March, and the labor force is down by 99,000 compared to where it was in May. The August household survey increases are more likely blips rather than the start of positive trends, unfortunately.

"As for President Obama's jobs speech on September 8, it appears it may include more of the same policymaking that has failed for the past nearly three years. For example, politically-driven infrastructure spending, subsidies for his favored 'green' jobs, temporary and targeted tax measures, and further extensions of unemployment benefits will not create jobs or restore business confidence. Our economy needs substantive and permanent tax relief, deregulation, smaller government, and aggressive free trade policies. That, unfortunately, is the antithesis of Obama-nomics."

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