politics

June Jobs Report a Testament to U.S. Economy and Federal Response, Says White House Advisor

The Trump administration is showing optimism as the June jobs report, released Thursday, revealed the U.S. added a better-than-expected 4.8 million jobs last month. The boost in jobs followed another unexpected addition of 2.7 million in May.
"Combined, the two months, we surpassed expectations by more than 11 million jobs," Tyler Goodspeed, the acting chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisors, told Cheddar. 
Since the coronavirus pandemic forced widespread shutdowns across the country in March, more than 50 million people have applied for unemployment benefits. Today's numbers signal that companies in some areas are getting back to business.
"I do think that this really is a testament to not only the resilience of the American economy but also to the unprecedented scale and speed of the response of the federal government," said Goodspeed.
While Goodspeed acknowledged that the number of Americans who are still out of work is concerning, he said there is a lot to consider before implementing a Phase 4 stimulus package.
"The president is definitely interested in exploring the possibility of a payroll tax cut and also protecting businesses against exorbitant liability for COVID-related, non-economic damages," the advisor said.
While Goodspeed said he could not comment on efforts to extend the small business loan program, he did say the White House is examining the pandemic unemployment assistance program, which provides an additional $300 to $600 to weekly unemployment benefits. It is set to expire at the end of July.
"I think the unprecedented measures to expand access to unemployment insurance and to expand those benefits was important for mitigating that loss [of incomes]," he said. Now the administration is "carefully reconsidering whether we're striking the right balance between income replacement and making sure that we don't have high implicit tax rates on work."
Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia and White House economic advisor Larry Kudlow have both publically expressed that the administration would like to discontinue expanded benefit program.
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