“Our economy is on the move,” Biden said in his remarks from the White House, as he argued that job recovery has come much faster than anticipated.
Biden said he would be calling lawmakers to urge them to vote on the Build Back Better Act and the infrastructure bills “right now.” As concerns are raised over inflation, Biden argued that the legislation would mitigate it.
“If your number one issue is cost of living, your number one priority should be that Congress pass these bills,” Biden said.
PREVIOUSLY: The U.S. economy added 531,000 jobs in October, as the unemployment rate fell to 4.6%, a rebound from lackluster numbers over the late summer.
The numbers were good news for Joe Biden’s administration, which had expected a booming economy by this point. But the uptick in Covid-19 cases due to the Delta variant slowed economic growth, and many companies put off plans for a full return to the workplace.
Biden is expected to address the jobs report later on Friday. White House Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre touted progress on jobs at the briefing on Thursday.
The labor force participation rate remained unchanged, at 61.6%.
The Labor Department pointed to significant job gains in leisure and hospitality, professional and business services, transportation and warehousing.
The job gains were ahead of analysts’ expectations, a turnaround from recent months, when the employment reports triggered angst that the economy was slowing. The Labor Department revised upward the job gains from September, to 312,000, and in August, to 483,000. Those revisions showed that hiring was 235,000 jobs higher than previously reported during those months. It was an indication that the impact of the Covid resurgence was not as great as previously believed.
Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics, wrote on Twitter that the jobs numbers were “unambiguously strong,” while Harvard’s Jason Furman called it “solid.” Furman, however, noted that jobs were still 6 million less than what was predicted by this point in the year by the Congressional Budget Office.