The jobs report for December is out with some good news: The unemployment rate is down to 9.4 percent, hitting the lowest it's been since May, 2009. However, the number of jobs created, 103,000 in December, came in lower than expected. Economics editor for The Takeaway and WNYC, Charlie Herman explains.
The 112th Congress begins this week, and with the House under Republican control while Democrats still hold a slim majority in the Senate, many are expecting gridlock for the next two years. Todd Zwillich, The Takeaway's Washington correspondent, and Charlie Herman, economics editor for The Takeaway and WNYC, look at what's in store for Congress in the upcoming days, weeks, and even years. They also discuss the obstacles President Obama's health care plan may face this year: Will the plan as implemented look the same in 2012 as it does today?
President Obama returns from his family holiday in Hawaii to the first major reorganization of his administration. When restructuring, does he choose a team for governing or a team for winning and campaigning for 2012? Marcus Mabry, associate editor for our partner, The New York Times, joins us to discuss. Also,major snow storms hit multiple parts of the country over the weekend; we'll find out how the weather affected post-Christmas sales, and what retailers made during the shopping craze before the big day from Charlie Herman, economics editor for The Takeaway.
The Commerce Department has revised numbers reflecting how much the economy grew last summer, moving the GDP up from 2.5 to 2.6 percent. Economists are hailing the change as good news, but not great news. Many had hoped that the growth would reach as high as 3 percent. Is this a cause to backtrack on recent optimism, or still cautious progression on the economy? Economics editor for The Takeaway Charlie Herman joins us for more on the subject.
The Senate voted to repeal "don't ask, don't tell," over the weekend. The law, enacted 17 years ago by President Bill Clinton, allowed gays to serve in the military, as long as they did not reveal their sexual orientation. Todd Zwillich, The Takeaway's Washington correspondent, looks at what's next for the repeal. Meanwhile, a number of economic indicators come out this week, and Charlie Herman, economics editor for The Takeaway and WNYC, looks at the upcoming third quarter GDP numbers due out Wednesday, along with existing home sales numbers, and new home sales numbers on Thursday.
Many Congressional Democrats are not happy with President Obama's compromise with Republicans on extending tax cuts. House Democrats showed that by voting not to bring up the tax bill last week. Callie Crossley, host of the Callie Crossley Show on WGBH in Boston, and Charlie Herman, economics editor for The Takeaway and WNYC, look at how the Senate plans to vote today on the bill.
Will we or will we not see an extension to the Bush-era tax cuts? That is what we’re all waiting to see play out this week. Democrats want to return to Clinton-era taxes on the wealthy, and Republicans are holding out for preserving the status quo. But President Obama and Democrats may be backing off on their stance, as a compromise looks like it could be in the works. The Bush-era cuts would be temporarily extended to everyone, rich and poor, for two years...if unemployment benefits are extended as well.
Employers added only 39,000 jobs last month — a big decline from October's 172,000. Private companies created the fewest number since January. The anemic month for the labor sector pushes the national unemployment rate from 9.6 to 9.8 percent. That's 19 months of a rate over 9 percent, the longest stretch on record. What do the new numbers mean for the economy?
Looking ahead to the week's agenda: Unemployment benefits for an estimated two million Americans is set to expire by tomorrow; Congress will decide whether or not to extend them. Time is running out to pass the new START agreement with Russia, as well. Two days of debate have been scheduled for Thursday and Friday that will address the Pentagon's soldier survey on "Don't Ask Don't Tell," and whether or not the repeal, backed by the White House, will go through. Also, the highly debated Bush Tax Cuts are set to expire in January for both middle and upper-income brackets...both sides seem to be adamantly sticking to their guns with no compromise in sight.
With Thanksgiving approaching, how many notches you'll have to relax that belt buckle won't be the only question people will be asking. Much of the focus will be on air safety and retail sales. Many travelers are not happy about the latest security measures the TSA is using for secondary screening, including full-body scans and thorough pat-downs. Many see both as extremely invasive, but the TSA says that both measures will stay. Callie Crossley, host of "The Callie Crossley Show" at WGBH in Boston, will see if any changes will come as Thanksgiving quickly approaches.
The 110th Congress begins its lame duck session today, and the question remains: how much can lawmakers get done before the new members step in? Charlie Herman, economics editor for The Takeaway and WNYC looks at how this session of Congress handles the Bush tax cuts, "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," and the new START treaty.
Government spending, according to some conventional wisdom, is out of control. That battle cry rallied many politicians during the mid-term elections, helped elect Tea Party and conservative Republican candidates, while putting Democrats on the defensive over the deficit. But now that elections are over, do politicians have the stomach for real change? Yesterday, the co-chairs of President Obama's non-binding fiscal commission on deficit reduction released a draft plan to curb spending ... but the plan met with general dismay in Washington. Why?
After the beating Democrats took in last week's mid-term elections, all eyes, including those of our managing producer, Noel King, will be looking at what the GOP's initial moves will be this week. She'll also look at President Obama's continued trip through Asia, along with Charlie Herman, business and economics editor for The Takeaway and WNYC Radio.
Every Monday, we take a look at the big stories in the week ahead. This week's Agenda, covers foreclosures, midterm elections, calls for UN peace keepers in Sudan and the Nobel Prize in Economics.
The United Nations General Assembly kicks off this week, starting with a summit on the Millenium Development Goals, which aim to cut world poverty in half by 2015. As world leaders converge on New York for this event, they will also join leaders of the corporate and non-profit world for the 6th annual Clinton Global Initiative.
Both the House and Senate head back into session this week, and the decision whether or not to extend the Bush-era tax cuts will be high on the agenda. Takeaway's economics editor Charlie Herman and National Journal managing editor Terence Samuel look at what else Congress has to look forward to
Private employers hired more workers during the past three months than previously thought, adding 67,00 workers in August. However, this was not enough to keep unemployment from growing. The latest jobless numbers shows that unemployment hit 9.6 percent last month. Charlie Herman, The Takeaway and WNYC's economics editor explains what this means for the economy and for the workers who still have jobs.
As large portions of the East Coast breathed a sigh of relief as Hurricane Earl lost strength overnight, another storm, this one economic, was also less damaging than expected.
The government reports that employers cut fewer jobs than expected in August. The nation’s payrolls shrunk by 54,000.
This was not a great report but it was "better than many thought it would be,” wrote Joel Naroff, chief economist with Naroff Advisors in a note to clients.
We look ahead to this week of Middle East peace talks, a new jobs report, and auto sales numbers. On Tuesday, President Obama will address the nation from the Oval Office as combat operations in Iraq officially end. On Wednesday, we'll hear about auto sales numbers for August, and on Thursday, a new round of Middle East peace talks will begin. Friday brings the anticipated jobs report from the Labor Department.
Revised GDP numbers for the second quarter — a key indicator of financial health for the country — have just come out, and they are disappointing for those who hoped the U.S. was improving economically. Growth was cut sharply to 1.6 percent in the second quarter, and though the drop isn't as bad as some economists feared, many are wondering if a double-dip recession is becoming a reality. What do the new numbers mean, and what can we do to improve our situation?