President Joe Biden has praised the latest jobs report, which showed that the U.S. economy added jobs in December, despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
The report, released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, showed that the economy added 245,000 jobs in December, while the unemployment rate fell to 6.7%. This is the second consecutive month of job gains, following five months of job losses.
In a statement, President Biden said, “Today’s jobs report shows that we are on the right track, but we have a long way to go. We need to continue to do everything we can to get this virus under control and get our economy back on track.”
The President also highlighted the need to provide additional support to the American worker, saying, “We need to make sure that every American worker has the opportunity to benefit from this economic recovery, and that means passing a robust stimulus package and raising the minimum wage.”
The jobs report also showed that the employment in the leisure and hospitality sector, which has been heavily impacted by the pandemic, increased by 111,000 in December. The retail trade sector also added jobs, with an increase of 41,000.
However, the jobs report also showed that the number of unemployed people who were on temporary layoff increased by 2.9 million in December, which is a sign that many of the job losses were due to the pandemic rather than permanent job cuts.
Economists are cautiously optimistic about the jobs report, with some saying that it is a sign that the economy is starting to recover, but others warning that the ongoing pandemic and the lack of additional stimulus could still cause the recovery to stall.
“The jobs report is a clear indication that the economy is starting to recover, but there is still a long way to go,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics. “The lack of additional stimulus and the ongoing pandemic could still cause the recovery to stall.”
Overall, the jobs report is seen as a positive sign for the U.S. economy, with President Biden hailing it as a step in the right direction, but also emphasizing the need for continued support for American workers and further actions to combat the pandemic.