Confidence in economic growth sags while Obama makes speeches
by Don McKee
July 31, 2013 12:03 AM | 2122 views | 1 1 comments | 51 51 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Don McKee
Don McKee
Georgia’s unemployment rate has edged up while people across the country are more pessimistic about the outlook for a stronger economy in the next year.

Meanwhile, President Obama is out campaigning to tax the rich and big corporations, his usual solution to the nation’s economic problems.

In Georgia, the jobless rate has risen from 8.2 percent in April to 8.6 percent in June, the latest month’s data available.

Six hundred jobs were lost and the labor force dropped by 1,341, but Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said the unemployment up-tick was caused mainly by education workers not working in the summer and new graduates who hadn’t found jobs.

He said it was the best May-to-June performance since 2002 and the state would have actually gained 9,400 jobs last month if the loss of 10,000 government jobs were factored out.

But nationwide confidence is lacking as to where this economy is going. The Rasmussen Employment Index of worker confidence, released Tuesday, slumped by 10 points in July to the lowest mark since November 2012.

The index was 83.1, still up three points from July last year but sharply lower than the six-year high of 94.4 hit in May this year.

A Rasmussen Reports telephone poll taken earlier in July showed that only 33 percent believed the economy would be stronger in a year’s time, while 41 percent said the economy would be even weaker in another year.

Twenty percent expected economic conditions to stay about the same as now — not going anywhere fast.

Similarly, the Pew Research Center in a poll this month found 44 percent of adults expect it will take a long time for this economy to recover, versus 28 percent who say it is already recovering and 26 percent say it will recover soon.

That’s a sizable shift from last October, with the presidential election nearing, when only 36 percent said it would be a long time before economic recovery occurred and a big majority of 61 percent said the economy already was in recovery or would soon make a comeback.

The views about current economic conditions have also taken a slide from earlier this year, Pew found. A whopping 82 percent rated conditions as only fair or poor, while only 17 percent say they’re excellent or good.

That survey showed Obama’s overall job rating split dead even with 46 percent approval and 46 percent disapproval. However, Rasmussen found 52 percent disapproval in its poll last week.

No doubt, all of these negative numbers spurred Obama to the campaign stump, his favorite approach to problems as opposed to staying at the White House and trying to work out reasonable solutions with his Republican opponents.

But he needs to check last week’s Rasmussen poll that showed 62 percent of likely voters think government spending should be cut because of economic problems. Only 23 percent of voters said the government should spend more to help the economy.

No amount of speech-making by Obama will fix the economy.

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July 31, 2013
WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy grew from April through June at an annual rate of 1.7 percent — a sluggish pace but stronger than in the previous quarter. Businesses spent more, and the federal government cut less, offsetting weaker spending by consumers.

Read more: The Marietta Daily Journal - US economy grows at 1 7 pct pace in 2nd quarter
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