Simon Ateba is Chief White House Correspondent for Today News Africa. Simon covers the U.S. government, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions in Washington D.C. He can be reached on [email protected]
President Biden’s economic plan seems to be working with the latest unemployment claims falling once again to their lowest level since the coronavirus pandemic hit the United States in 2020.
The latest figures show that the unemployment claims dropped this week to a new pandemic low – the lowest level in 16 months – and the four-week average continued to trend downwards.
“Today’s unemployment claim numbers are further proof that the President’s economic plan is working,” the White House said in a brief statement, noting that “President Biden has focused since day one on jump starting our economy, getting Americans back to work, and rebuilding our economy from the bottom up and the middle out.”
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When President Biden took office on January 20, 2021, over 800,000 new unemployment claims were being filed every week on average – and now that number has been more than cut in half.
The number of weekly claims has continued to drop drastically over the past one month with more Americans finding jobs amid an increase in vaccination rate and a gradual reopening of the economy.
With the economic boost and life getting back to pre-pandemic activity, the White House seems to be upbeat.
“Yesterday, we learned that unemployment rates are lower in all 389 metro areas in the U.S. than this time last year – and payroll jobs were up in 275. Last week, we saw personal income rise almost 60% in the first quarter of 2021 because of the Rescue Plan – after a decline in the fourth quarter of 2020,” the White House said, noting that in June, the Federal Reserve updated their projections to show the American economy was growing in 2021 at 7% — the fastest rate since 1984 – and an increase from 5% in their projections for 2021 this time last year.
The OECD and World Bank similarly have roughly doubled their projections for America’s economic growth in 2021 following new policies put in place by Biden administration.
Even with the latest good news, the White House is paying close attention to the coronavirus Delta variant, which has been detected in all 50 U.S. states, including in states where most Americans remain unvaccinated.