Washington, D.C. – Today the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released its monthly jobs report for September.  Sen. Charles E. Schumer, Chairman of the Joint Economic Committee, released the following statement in reaction to the report and the persistently bad news about this economy:

“These latest unemployment numbers are simply stunning.  159,000 lost jobs is a huge number.  What kind of wakeup call does it take for this Administration to try to recognize that we need a real stimulus plan to jump start our economy?  This is just another reminder of the damage done to American families by eight years of economic mismanagement and deregulatory zeal.  The problems of Wall Street have now hit Main Street with full force.  While I am hopeful that the Administration’s current plan will keep the credit crisis from becoming a credit catastrophe, we still have a great deal of work ahead of us to restore the health of the American economy.”   – Sen. Schumer

Some quick facts from the September Jobs Report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics:

- 159,000 jobs were lost in September, the highest monthly loss in 5 years.  After 9 consecutive months of job loss 760,000 jobs have been lost in 2008.

- The unemployment rate remains at 6.1%, which is higher than at any point in the 2001 recession.
September recorded the lowest hours worked since recored started being kept in 1964.  Manufactures slashed their payrolls for the 27th straight month.  The service sector employment fell by 82,000, which is the biggest drop in over 5 years.   

- Wages have only increased 3.4% in the last year while inflation has skyrocketed to 5.4% from August 2007 – August 2008.

The JEC Hearing on, "The Employment Situation: September 2008" with Commissioner Keith Hall can be found here.

JOINT ECONOMIC COMMITTEE TO HOLD HEARING ON SEPTEMBER JOBS REPORT

 JEC to Examine Newly Released Employment Figures from Bureau of Labor Statistics as Job Losses and Falling Real Wages Spread Across the Economy

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer and Representative Carolyn B. Maloney, Chairman and Vice-Chair of the Joint Economic Committee (JEC) respectively, will hold a hearing on the newly released Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) monthly employment figures with Commissioner Keith Hall on Friday, October 3, 2008 at 9:30 am in the Dirksen Senate Office Building, Room 106. Rep. Maloney will preside over the hearing, entitled “The Employment Situation: September 2008.” In the wake of eight straight months of job losses through August, Dr. Hall will assess the recent developments in the labor market.
 
WHAT:              JEC Hearing: “The Employment Situation: September 2008”
WHO:                Dr. Keith Hall, Commissioner, Bureau of Labor Statistics                  
WHEN:              9:30 a.m., Friday, October 3, 2008
WHERE:             Dirksen Senate Office Building, Room 106

The Joint Economic Committee, established under the Employment Act of 1946, was created by Congress to review economic conditions and to analyze the effectiveness of economic policy.

 www.jec.senate.gov

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MEDIA ADVISORY:

LEAVE NO FAMILY BEHIND: HOW CAN WE REDUCE THE RISING NUMBER OF AMERICAN FAMILIES LIVING IN POVERTY?

With More than 37 Million Americans Reported to Be Living in Poverty According to the Census, Can Better Federal Guidelines Help State and Local Governments Reach More Families in Need?

Mayor Cicilline, Experts to Examine Poverty Statistics and Offer Solutions to Improve Programs by Improving Measurement

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer and Representative Carolyn B. Maloney, Chairman and Vice Chair respectively of the Joint Economic Committee (JEC), will hold a hearing on poverty in the United States on Thursday, September 25, 2008 at 10:00 am in Room 562 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building.  The JEC hearing entitled, “Leave No Family Behind: How Can We Reduce the Rising Number of Americans Families Living in Poverty?”, will feature Mayor David N. Cicilline and poverty experts who will examine whether the outdated federal poverty measurements are preventing resources from reaching families and elderly Americans and what legislation may be appropriate to drastically reduce the number of U.S. families living in poverty.  Since 2000, the number of Americans living in poverty jumped by 5.7 million to 37.3 million; and the poverty rate rose to 12.5 percent in 2007. 

WHAT:   Joint Economic Committee Hearing: “Leave No Family Behind: How Can We Reduce the Rising Number of Americans Families Living in Poverty?”
WHO: Mayor David N. Cicilline, Providence, RI
Rebecca M. Blank, Robert V. Kerr Senior Fellow, Brookings Institute
 Angela Glover Blackwell, Co-chair, Half-in-Ten Campaign
 John W. Edwards, President of the Board of the National Community Action Partnership
 Robert E. Rector, Senior Research Fellow, Domestic Policy, The Heritage Foundation
 Additional witnesses may be added.
 WHEN:  10:00 am, Thursday, September 25, 2008
 WHERE:  Room 562, Dirksen Senate Office Building

The Joint Economic Committee, established under the Employment Act of 1946, was created by Congress to review economic conditions and to analyze the effectiveness of economic policy.
www.jec.senate.gov
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NEW JEC ANALYSIS:  AMERICAN FAMILIES ARE SPENDING TWICE AS MUCH ON HOUSEHOLD BASICS THAN 8 YEARS AGO, BUT INCOMES ARE STAGNANT

From 2000-2007 Food, Gas, and Health Care Bills Rose, While Incomes Fell

Schumer, Maloney, Emanuel Slam Bush Economic Record As Another Gov’t Report Shows High Prices for Consumers

Washington, D.C. – Senator Charles E. Schumer, Chairman of the Joint Economic Committee (JEC), along with Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney, JEC Vice Chair, and Rep. Rahm Emanuel, Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, released a new JEC analysis showing that families are spending twice as much on household expenses than they did in 2000, even though incomes were stagnant.   The lawmakers released this new JEC analysis as the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported the new Consumer Price Index (CPI) for August, which showed that despite the small decline in prices from the previous month, prices are up 7.4% over the past two years. 

Sen.  Schumer said, “Under the Bush administration over the last seven years, families’ pockets have been picked at the grocery store, the gas pump, and each time they make their home energy, health care, and mortgage payments.  The Bush administration has presided over an unprecedented middle class economic squeeze -- household living expenses have more than doubled, while incomes have actually shrunk.  The consumer price index released today reminds us of this stark reality for middle class families – we’re doing worse under the Bush administration than we were doing under the Clinton administration.”

Rep. Maloney stated, “Families are being squeezed in a vise grip of stagnant wages and rising prices for basic necessities. With inflation hovering at highs not seen in decades, buying groceries, filling the gas tank, and paying health care premiums are making it tough for families to make ends meet. The drain on family budgets is more evidence of the failure of the past eight years and the need for a new direction on economic policy. Americans can’t afford not to change course on the economy.”

Rep. Emanuel said, "The Bush Administration has given middle class families smaller paychecks and bigger bills. While gas, health care, food and energy prices have skyrocketed, median household income has decreased since George Bush took office.  Middle class families are struggling to get by and get ahead. Republicans shouldn't continue to stand in the way of a plan to get our economy back on track.”

 

The Joint Economic Committee analysis also found that:
• The increase in cost-of-living expenses for the average American household between 2000 and 2007 is more than double the increase during the first 7 years under President Clinton.  In addition to the dramatic increases in food and gasoline expenses, health care spending was about $3,400 higher in 2007 than it was in 2000 – more than twice the $1,500 increase between 1992 and 1999.  American households recently have been feeling the pain at the pump and the pinch at the grocery store checkout, but the average household has also seen many of their other living expenses rise dramatically since President Bush took office.
 Incomes have not kept pace with the recent rise in basic living expenses.  From 1992 to 1999, real incomes for the average household rose by over 20 percent - an average of 2.8 percent growth per year.  In contrast, the average household was making half a percent LESS in 2006 (the most recent year for which household income is available) than they were in 2000.  The 2000s economic recovery was the first since World War II where the typical household saw net income losses.  In other words, the typical household has not recouped their income losses from the last recession as they face the current economic downturn.  Real household incomes were $324 lower in 2007 than they were in 2000 (the last year for which we have data), according to new Census figures.


The Joint Economic Committee, established under the Employment Act of 1946, was created by Congress to review economic conditions and to analyze the effectiveness of economic policy.
www.jec.senate.gov
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In reaction to the Interior Department Inspector General’s report on serious ethical and professional misbehavior by Mineral Management Service employees, Sen. Charles E. Schumer, Chairman of the Joint Economic Committee, released the following statement:

“Unfortunately for U.S. consumers, this IG report has it all – sex, drugs, and Bush administration officials once again in cahoots with Big Oil.  The Department of Justice and the Interior Department should prosecute those involved in this unseemly case to the fullest extent of the law- it is a flagrant abuse of the public trust.”

The Joint Economic Committee issued a report last year that revealed taxpayers lost billions in revenues due to shoddy oil and gas royalties collection by the Bush Interior Department’s MMS division.  You can find the full JEC report here

FEDERAL RESERVE CHAIRMAN BERNANKE TO TESTIFY AT JOINT ECONOMIC COMMITTEE ON THE U.S. ECONOMIC OUTLOOK
 
JEC Hearing Will Be Fed Chair’s First Congressional Testimony After September FOMC Meeting, and Treasury’s Fannie and Freddie Takeover

Given the Current Economic Downturn, Spreading Credit and Housing Crisis, and Fears of Growing Inflation, Schumer Requested Fed Chair to Testify 

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer, Chairman of the Joint Economic Committee (JEC), will hold a hearing on the Economic Outlook for the United States with Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, Ben Bernanke, on Wednesday, September 24, 2008 at 10:00 a.m. in Room 106 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building.  Chairman Bernanke will provide his first Congressional testimony following the September Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC).  The Joint Economic Committee, along with Chairman Bernanke, will discuss the effects of the credit crunch and housing crisis, growing inflation, and current state of the economic downturn. 

            WHAT:   Joint Economic Committee Hearing on “The Economic Outlook”
            WHO:     The Honorable Ben Bernanke
                          Chairman, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System
            WHEN:   10:00 a.m., Wednesday, September 24, 2008
            WHERE: 106 Dirksen Senate Office Building

The Joint Economic Committee, established under the Employment Act of 1946, was created by Congress to review economic conditions and to analyze the effectiveness of economic policy.

www.jec.senate.gov

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Today the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released its monthly jobs report for August.  Sen. Charles E. Schumer, Chairman of the Joint Economic Committee released the following statement in reaction to the report and the persistently bad news about this economy:

“If there is a bright spot in today’s bleak jobs news, it is that we only have 4 jobs reports left before the Bush stewardship of this economy is finished. The White House and Republicans in Congress need to join us in passing additional measures to shore up this economy and give American families an opportunity to prosper.”

“For eight straight months, over 600,000 jobs have disappeared under Bush's watch economy, and today the unemployment rate spiked to 6.1 percent.  These job losses and the weak economy are taking their toll on American families across the nation – from manufacturing and industrial regions to high-tech and farming states – making it harder for families to get ahead.” – Sen. Schumer

Some quick facts from the August Jobs Report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics:
• Unemployment rate rose from 5.7 to 6.1 percent in August, the highest rate since September 2003. 
• 84,000 non-farm payroll jobs were lost.
• Since January, payroll employment has declined by 605,000.
• Manufacturing employment fell by 61,000; Motor vehicle and parts makers cut 39,000 jobs; and the employment services industry lost 53,000 jobs, totaling 284,000 fewer jobs this year.
• The number of jobless Americans shot up to 9.4 million, up by 592,000 over the month and by 1.8 million since April.
• Unemployment levels and rates rose over the month for most major demographic groups, with a particularly sharp increase in the rate for women age 20 and over.
• The number of long-term unemployed (27 weeks and over) increased by 163,000 to 1.8 million.

TROUBLING NEW DATA ON U.S. HOUSEHOLD INCOMES, HEALTH CARE COVERAGE, AND POVERTY INDICATE FAMILIES CONTINUE TO EXPERIENCE TOUGH ECONOMIC TIMES

 JEC Examination of Census Figures Released Today Shows U.S. Families Are in Worse Economic Shape Now Than in 2000 – Household Incomes Are Down, More Have No Health Insurance, and Poverty Is Up

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer and Representative Carolyn B. Maloney, Chairman and Vice-Chair of the Joint Economic Committee (JEC) released statements in reaction to today’s troubling new data from the U.S. Census Bureau on household incomes, health care coverage, and poverty.  While wages have risen slightly from 2006 to 2007 and fewer families are without health insurance coverage, over 30 million Americans are still living in poverty.  More importantly, in the last seven years, the vast majority of Americans’ incomes are down, more families are going without health insurance, and millions more are living in poverty. 

Sen. Schumer said, “The U.S. economy under President Bush is suffering one of the worst downturns in a generation.  Since 2000, more Americans are earning less and are faced with rising household bills, more families are without health insurance, and more American families are living in poverty.  Today’s Census figures paint a bleak economic picture that Americans are tired of looking at – and one that they can and will change come November.”

Rep. Maloney said, "Families made some progress last year, but the current downturn will surely erase those gains if we don't change course. Since President Bush took office, nearly six million more Americans are living in poverty, over seven million more lack health insurance, and median family income is $324 lower. For the first time on record, families are facing a downturn having not yet recovered economically from the last recession. We need a new direction that gets the economy back on track, puts people back to work and restores broadly shared prosperity.” 

The Census data, further crunched by the majority staff of the Joint Economic Committee can be found at Poverty, Wages, and Health Insurance in America, brief facts are below:

• Real median household income for the nation decreased 0.6 percent from $50,557 in 2000 to $50,233 in 2007.
• Americans living in poverty increased by nearly 5.7 million since 2000 and the poverty rate has risen more than a full percentage point since 2000. The poverty rate in 2007 was 12.5 percent, increasing slightly from its level of 12.3 percent in 2006. Today, 37.3 million Americans are living in poverty.  
• The number of people without health insurance coverage increased by 18.8 percent or 7.2 million Americans from 2000 to 2007.  The uninsured rate fell slightly to 15.3 percent in 2007 from 15.8 percent in 2006, mainly due to increases in government coverage.
 

Direct links to each JEC fact sheet are here:
• Poverty in America

• Income in America

• Health Insurance in America

The Joint Economic Committee, established under the Employment Act of 1946, was created by Congress to review economic conditions and to analyze the effectiveness of economic policy.

 www.jec.senate.gov

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U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer, Chairman of the Joint Economic Committee, released the following statement in reaction to a slew of dismal economic news today including inflation, wages, jobless claims, and foreclosures:

"If this administration were competing in the ‘bad economic policy’ Olympics, they'd receive four gold medals today.  Inflation jumped for the third straight month, weekly paychecks are smaller, more workers are filing jobless claims, and home foreclosures continue to put more families on the economic edge.  It is long past time for this administration to help families and workers compete in a stagnating economic environment -- economic stimulus should be at the top of the agenda before this administration throws in the towel."

The low-lights of today’s economic news:
• Seasonally adjusted, the July Consumer Price Index (CPI-U) shot up at twice the expected rate, rising 0.8 percent.  This followed a 1.1 percent increase in June 2008.  This is higher than economists expected.  This is the fastest year over year increase since 1991. 

• While the applications for unemployment benefits dropped to 450,000, down by 10,000 from the previous week, this was a smaller decline than expected.  The four-week average for jobless benefits is at the highest level in six years.

• For July 2008, RealtyTrac recorded 272,171 homes received foreclosure notices.  This is an 8 percent increase from June 2008 and a 55 percent rise from a year ago.  One in every 464 households received a foreclosure notice last month. 

• In July 2008 the real average weekly earnings fell by 0.8 percent.   Real weekly earnings were down 3.1 percent from July 2007.  There was a 0.3 percent increase in average hourly earnings, but it was offset by a 0.3 percent decrease in average weekly hours and a 0.9 percent increase in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W). 

Today, the Joint Economic Committee released a series of snapshots that examines the impact of the worsening economy on women, Hispanics, Americans nearing retirement, African-Americans, and young families.  Each snapshot examines the current housing, jobs, wages, health care, and poverty data and their impact on these individual groups.  In addition you can find state-by-state economic snapshots on our website that  were also recently updated.

·         Young Workers and Their Families are Being Squeezed

·         Women and Their Families are Being Squeezed

·         African American Families are Being Squeezed

·         Hispanic Families are Being Squeezed

·          Families Near Retirement are Being Squeezed

·          State by State Economic Snapshots