Senior White House economists yesterday predicted the U.S. economy will start creating jobs by spring and said that boosting employment will be at the top of President Barack Obama’s agenda next year.
Growing public frustration with the still-sluggish economy and double-digit unemployment has weigh-ed on Obama’s popularity and may put his fellow Democrats at risk in the 2010 congressional elections.
But Obama’s aides and many private economists were encouraged by a better-than-expected employment report for November that showed that the jobless rate inched down to 10 percent from October’s 10.2 percent.
“I believe that, as do most professional forecasters, that by spring, employment growth will start to be turning positive,” Lawrence Summers, director of the White House National Economic Council, said on ABC’s “This Week.”
In November, the pace of job losses slowed to 11,000 in November after a decline of 111,000 in October, marking a major improvement from the beginning of the year when the country was seeing jobs disappear at a rate of 700,000 a month.
Christina Romer, chairwoman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, told NBC’s “Meet the Press” that there could be job increases in the first quarter of next year.