In a boost for the Bush administration and the President’s re-election bid, Reuters reports that economists estimate that the US has added another quarter-million jobs in June, pushing the total for the year past 1.4 million:
U.S. employment likely surged again in June, taking gains this year to some 1.4 million jobs and bolstering President George W. Bush’s economic record ahead of the November election, analysts said onWednesday.
Economists believe 250,000 jobs were created this month, virtually matching May’s jump of 248,000, though the unemployment rate probably will not budge from 5.6 percent because newly hopeful job-seekers are returning to the job market.
Not only is the economy producing new jobs at a fast clip, the newer jobs tend to be higher-paying as well, as they were in April and May according to analysts. The new jobs have also bolstered consumer confidence as the news seems to have finally sunk into the electorate:
The shift in political rhetoric from the “jobless recovery” lament of the Democrats to “nearly a million jobs in 100 days” of the Bush administration appears to have reached consumers, whose confidence levels hit the highest level in two years in June, according to a Conference Board report this week.
“They get the feeling that things have turned the corner and that’s making them much more hopeful,” said Joel Naroff, president and chief economist of Naroff Economic Advisors.
Not to mention that workers’ compensation increased, too:
Friday’s report is also expected to show a sixth straight monthly rise in hourly earnings, though the workweek will likely be unchanged at 33.8 hours, according to a Reuters survey of economists.
Longer hours and fatter paychecks are seen by experts as evidence the economy is on the threshold of even stronger job gains in the months ahead.
“The next step after increasing the length of the workweek, paying perhaps more overtime (or) hiring more temporary workers … (is) hiring back some of the previously laid off workers or ramping up staffing in general,” Reaser said.
So the Bush economic strategy has paid off, Iraq has its sovereignty back, we’ve so far avoided another terrorist attack in the US, Libya has disarmed, India and Pakistan have expanded diplomatic ties, and NATO has agreed to support both Iraqi and Afghan security forces to assist in establishing democracy in Southwest Asia. Somehow, I suspect that we’ve seen the high-water mark of the Kerry candidacy.