Friday, March 4 — U.S. Rep. Don Beyer, Chair of the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee, released the following statement after the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that nonfarm payroll employment increased by 678,000 in February and the unemployment rate declined to 3.8%. The unemployment rate was 6.6% for Black workers, 4.4% for Hispanic workers, 3.1% for Asian workers and 7.4% (not seasonally adjusted) for American Indian and Alaska Native workers.
“During his first year in office, President Biden oversaw most jobs created in a single year, and surging job growth continued into February 2022. With 678,000 more jobs added—exceeding all expectations—the total number of jobs created under the current administration now stands at 7.4 million.
“Not only has job growth blown all expectations out of the water, but GDP growth is the strongest it’s been in nearly 40 years, and it’s outpacing every other major economy. Wages are rising—particularly among low-income workers—and unemployment is falling rapidly. It took nine years after the Great Recession for unemployment to recover as much as it has in just two years post-coronavirus recession.
“The speed and strength of this recovery reflects strong leadership and investments in families, workers and small businesses to address the pandemic and get our economy roaring again.
“Yet even as today’s data continue to show robust progress, global price spikes are straining household budgets and depriving workers of the full benefits of wage gains. President Biden announced the path forward to Building a Better America, and the most effective tools at Congress’ disposal to reduce inflationary pressure and promote broadly shared growth are investments that lower household costs for families and boost productivity.
“Workers and families have made it through an unprecedented economic challenge. We in Congress must answer this call.”