Goolsbee: Unemployment Rate ‘Remains Unacceptably High’

By Eliza

Jul 8, 2011 10:16am

ABC News’ Mary Bruce (@marykbruce) Reports:

In the first reaction from the White House to this morning’s dismal jobs report, Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers Austan Goolsbee says the country’s 9.2 percent unemployment rate “remains unacceptably high and faster growth is needed to replace the jobs lost in the downturn.”

Despite the fact that the economy added just 18,000 jobs last month, Goolsbee touts growth in the private sector and attributes the slow economic recovery to “headwinds” faced earlier this year.

“Today’s employment report shows that private sector payrolls increased by 57,000 in June and the unemployment rate ticked up to 9.2 percent. While the private sector has added 2.2 million jobs over the past 16 months, this month’s report reflects the recent slowdown of economic growth due to headwinds faced in the first half of this year,” he writes in a White House blog.

Goolsbee stresses that “it is important not to read too much into any one monthly report.”

“The monthly employment and unemployment numbers are volatile and employment estimates are subject to substantial revision,” he writes.

With the August 2 deadline to raise the nation’s $14.3 trillion debt ceiling fast approaching, Goolsbee says the latest figures highlight “the need for a balanced approach to deficit reduction that instills confidence and allows us to live within our means without shortchanging future growth.”

“Today’s report underscores the need for bipartisan action to help the private sector and the economy grow – such as measures to extend the payroll tax cut, pass the pending free trade agreements, and create an infrastructure bank to help put Americans back to work,” he writes.

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