National: The U.S. economy struggles forward

By Donny Kendal

The release of the March job numbers late last week produced mix reactions in regards to the current state of the U.S economy.

A Bloomberg article explains how the unemployment rate decreased to the lowest in four years, even with the disappointing numbers. The U.S. unemployment rate fell to 7.6 percent, but this was mostly the result of a shrinking labor force. The participation rate of the labor force fell to its lowest level since 1979.

Overall, the jobs report numbers were poor. A Politico article elaborates on the unsatisfying numbers. Only 88,000 jobs were added to the economy, far short of the projected 190,000 jobs.

“This is a punch to the gut,” said former chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, Austan Goolsbee.

The March jobs report is the first since the sequestration cuts to the federal government budget. In a Bloomberg article, a White House economic adviser Alan Krueger said the sequestration cuts are “one of the headwinds we’re facing.”

Opponents of the Obama administration are using these numbers as evidence of a failing economic policy. Speaker of the House of Representatives John Boehner is quoted saying in the Politico article that the policies “continue to make it harder for Americans to find work.”

Whether it is the result of the sequestration or the economic policies of the Obama administration, one thing is clear: the U.S. economy continues to struggle.