Employers in the US cut 553,000 jobs in November, amounting to the largest loss of employment since the severe recession of 1974, according to a Bureau of Labor Statistics report that came out this Friday. Congress and the administration are now under even more pressure to hurry along a new stimulus package for taxpayers.
Some say the current recession is just getting started, and that it will be necessary for Congress to make other provisions, such as mortgage relief and automobile manufacturer bailouts. With the report of the single largest one month job loss in thirty-five years, the government is in a quandary about how to relieve the pressure and increase the private spending it will take to revive the economy.
According to the report, 42,000 men and women who were working in October left the labor force in November, bringing the rise in unemployment to 6.7 percent. But these figures do not include the thousands of workers who have had their hours cut on the job and the number of Americans that are too discouraged by the lack of jobs to continue seeking regular employment.
Over the past year, over 1.9 million jobs have been lost in total. And two-thirds of these have been lost since September. President-elect Barack Obama said that he endorsed the idea that public spending was the best way to get the sluggish economy moving again. Obama stated that the economic crisis could in fact be turned into an opportunity to “improve the lives of ordinary people by rebuilding roads and modernizing schools for our children,” and also give us a chance to invest in clean energy projects.
President-elect Obama said he would continue his campaign pledge to recover job losses, and that his administration’s goal will be to create 2.5 million jobs over the next two years. But, hitting that mark would just barely outweigh the job losses of the past year.
With President Bush’s term ending, it is likely that an economic package that would be good enough to fix the country’s jobless problem will have to wait until the new administration takes office. In an appearance Friday morning, President Bush said that he was “concerned about our workers who have lost jobs.”
Bush also stated that the measures already put in place to fix the economy would take time to work. He did not mention, however, if he would soften his stance on either a stimulus package or a complete bailout of the auto industry, two options many experts feel are needed in order to avert even more job losses.