Employment continues to rebound from a low of 4.7 million job openings under former President Donald Trump.
This comes in spite of a Federal Reserve effort to decrease job growth to fight inflation. The Federal Reserve announced another interest rate hike today, a little over a month after a rate increase in late September. Increasing the interest rate can make it more expensive for companies to borrow money, resulting in them hiring fewer people. The Federal Reserve is expected to continue raising rates to combat inflation.
September is the 15th month in a row in which there have been more than 10 million job openings, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The streak started in July 2021, which is the first time openings topped the 10 million mark in U.S. history. Under former President Donald Trump, job openings reached 7.5 million in November 2018 and plunged to a low of 4.7 million in March 2020, when the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic triggered an economic crisis.
This isn’t the only recent positive economic indicator.
The unemployment rate in September was 3.5%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. When Biden took office in January 2021, the rate was 6.3%, and at the height of the pandemic in the U.S. in April 2020, it had reached as high as 14.7%.
The Bureau of Economic Analysis reported an economic growth estimate of 2.6% for the third quarter of 2022, 0.3% greater than expected. The rate of growth was negative in the first two quarters of 2022, while there was growth for all of 2021. “Today we got further evidence that our economic recovery is continuing to power forward,” Biden said in a statement responding to the BEA release.
Biden also warned that the Republicans’ economic agenda, particularly their desire to cut safety net programs such as Social Security and Medicare, would cause economic chaos. Republican leaders, including Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, have said that if they secure a majority in Congress, they will refuse to authorize the government to pay ongoing obligations without cuts to federal spending.
Since becoming president, Biden has signed several major pieces of legislation designed to help the country recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and to spark future job growth.
The American Rescue Plan sent billions to state and local governments to mitigate the economic fallout from the pandemic. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act earmarked funds to fix ailing infrastructure nationwide, employing thousands of people in the process.
The CHIPS and Science Act included incentives for companies to open and operate semiconductor facilities domestically, which has already resulted in multiple companies, including Micron and Intel, announcing higher hiring forecasts.
Biden also recently signed the Inflation Reduction Act, which included incentives for consumers who purchase electric vehicles that were mostly built in the U.S. As a result of the new law’s provisions that incentivize consumers to buy vehicles with components built domestically, Honda and LG announced plans for an electric vehicle battery facility in Ohio.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.