Daily VideoSeptember 2, 2011
New Economic Numbers Give Mixed Signals
Economists and government officials are poring over a new set of job numbers that give mixed signals but generally show that the U.S. economy and job growth are not improving as much as most would like.
Although first-time claims for unemployment benefits fell, they remain well above the point needed for long-term job growth. Retail sales and manufacturing both grew, but construction spending dropped significantly.
Amid the reports showing a stagnant economy, President Obama is slated to give a speech to Congress next Thursday about a plan to stimulate job growth. One economist says that debt and foreclosures are still the main obstacles to getting the economy growing again, and lawmakers are waiting to see how President Obama’s plan will address these factors.
“I have applied for, I would have to say, pretty close to over 300 jobs in the last year.” – Job seeker
“One [obstacle to job growth] is the debt that’s still hanging over a lot of households. They took on too much debt. And the other is, we built too many houses. And we just haven’t yet reached the point, when you add in the foreclosures as well, where we can get construction spending going again.” -Martin Bailey, economist
Warm Up Questions
1. What is a recession? What do you think the term ‘double-dip recession’ might mean?
2. What kind of data or information do you think would be important to an economist studying job growth? Why?
3. Why is the unemployment rate important? What does it tell us?
1. Why would information like new construction or manufacturing indicate how well the economy is doing?
2. What do you think President Obama should say in his speech? How should he help boost job growth?
3. If you were to investigate how the economy is doing where you live, what information would you need to find out? Who would you ask?
Tooltip of related stories
Tooltip of more video block
Submit Your Student Voice
At noon on Friday, Donald Trump was sworn into office by Chief Justice John Roberts on the steps of the United States Capitol Building.Arts & CultureEconomicsHealthScienceU.S.UncategorizedWorld
The confirmation hearing for President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for education secretary, Betsy DeVos, saw many questions about her support of school choice and charters. Continue readingArts & CultureEconomicsHealthScienceU.S.UncategorizedWorld
Outgoing President Barack Obama talked about key accomplishments made during his presidency in his farewell address from Chicago on Tuesday. Continue readingArts & CultureEconomicsHealthScienceU.S.UncategorizedWorld
Tuesday saw the beginning of confirmation hearings for Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions, President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for attorney general. Continue readingArts & CultureEconomicsHealthScienceU.S.UncategorizedWorld
Vice President Joe Biden criticized President-elect Donald Trump’s angry tweets in an interview with PBS NewsHour on Thursday, saying, “Grow up, Donald.” Continue readingArts & CultureEconomicsHealthScienceU.S.UncategorizedWorld