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Policies for Increasing Economic Growth and Employment

Politics is so tiring. The same old talking points every day. Wouldn’t it be nice if someone in Congress would give us a non-partisan objective view of our options? Oh, wait! The Congressional Budget Office does just that! Recent testimony by the CBO director tells us (yet again) what CBO has been telling us: that extending unemployment benefits produces more output and better increase in employment per dollar spent than any other option. Looking for a document (or an agency) to feature on your blog or GovInfo home page? Here you go!

  • Policies for Increasing Economic Growth and Employment in 2012 and 2013, Statement of Douglas W. Elmendorf, Director Congressional Budget Office, before the Committee on the Budget United States Senate, Congressional Budget Office (November 15, 2011) [54 pages, PDF].

    Comparing the estimated effects of different policy actions shows the following:

    • Policies that would have the largest effects on output and employment per dollar of budgetary cost in 2012 and 2013 are ones that would reduce the marginal cost to businesses of adding employees or that would be targeted toward people who would be most likely to spend the additional income. Such policies include reducing employers’ payroll taxes (especially if limited to firms that increase their payroll), increasing aid to the unemployed, and providing additional refundable tax credits in 2012 for lower- and middle-income households.
    • Policies that would primarily affect businesses’ cash flow but would have little impact on their marginal incentives to hire or invest would have only small effects. Such policies include reducing business income taxes and reducing tax rates on repatriated foreign earnings.

Ranking America

I came across Ranking America this evening. It provides information on the United States. Particularly, it compares America with other countries and also ranks it in terms of issues such as education, economy, environment etc. The information on this website has been compiled by Mark Rice, a professor of American Studies in a college in New York.

The Budget and Economic Outlook: Fiscal Years 2009 to 2019 from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO)

The Congressional Budget Office has released the Budget and Economic Outlook: Fiscal Years 2009 to 2019. The CBO expects that the current economic recession will “last until the second half of 2009, making it the longest recession since World War II.” The recession began in December 2007. Some of the main predictions are:

1) This year, the deficit will be $1.2 trillion (8.3% of the GDP)

2) Unemployment rate will increase more than 9 percent at the beginning of 2010

3) Federal revenues will decrease by $166 billion from the amount it was in 2008

4) A further decline of 14 percent in the national average price of a home between 2008 and 2010

5) In 2010, there will be a slow economic revival and a growth of 1.5 percent in the real GDP

Employment Situation – Commissioner’s Statement from BLS

Keith Hall, the Commissioner of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, issued a statement on the current employment situation. The total number of job losses in 2008 was 2.6 million and the rate of unemployment increased from 6.8 % to 7.2 %. He states that it is “the highest rate since January 1993.” Although employment declined in several major industrial sectors, it increased in healthcare. In the last year, 372,000 jobs were added in the healthcare sector.

Details of the depressing employment situation are readily available for access.

1) Employment Situation
2) Metropolitan Area Employment and Unemployment (Monthly)
3) Mass Layoffs (Monthly)
4) Regional and State Employment and Unemployment (Monthly)