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7/09/2005

Statement by AFL-CIO President on June Employment Report



Source: AFL-CIO


BY JOHN SWEENEY
AFL-CIO President

Despite signs of a strengthening economy, the labor market continues to disappoint. Only 146,000 new jobs were created in June, below the 190,000 economists expected and far below the 300,000 jobs typically produced at this stage in a recovery. The economy, which registered strong first quarter output growth, is simply not creating enough family-supporting jobs. The unemployment rate fell to 5.0 percent in June, but only because too many Americans have stopped looking for work, believing there are no good jobs in their communities. Working families cannot pay for a week’s worth of gasoline and groceries on the low wages that are being offered by many employers.

Our trade deficit continues to grow to record heights, destroying millions of good manufacturing jobs and weakening our nation’s industrial base. Another 25,000 manufacturing jobs were lost in June, jobs that helped to create our nation’s middle class. Corporate profits have recovered, but business is still not investing and hiring new employees. Productivity is surging, but real wages are still falling in the fourth year of recovery. Companies are using their profits to repair their balance sheets and boost CEO pay rather than create good jobs. And too many of the companies that are expanding their businesses are investing abroad rather than in the U.S. Meanwhile, large corporations like Wal-Mart continue to offer low-wage jobs with inadequate health care, putting undue burdens on taxpayers and communities.

Americans cannot continue to live on borrowed money. Our nation is on the wrong track economically. We must reverse the misguided policies that are undermining our economic security and put America back to work, producing more of what we consume and providing the good jobs we need to raise our families and build strong communities.

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