US Economy Adds 74K Jobs, Rate Falls to 6.7% - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

US Economy Adds 74K Jobs, Rate Falls to 6.7%

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U.S. employers added a scant 74,000 jobs in December, the fewest in three years. The disappointing gain ends 2013 on a weak note after recent economic reports had raised hopes for a strong finish.

The Labor Department says the unemployment rate fell from 7% in November to 6.7%, the lowest level since October 2008. But the drop occurred partly because more Americans stopped looking for jobs. The government counts people as unemployed only if they are actively searching for work.

Cold weather may have slowed hiring. Construction firms cut 16,000 jobs, the biggest drop in 20 months.

December's hiring is far below the average gain of 214,000 jobs a month in the preceding four months. But monthly gains averaged 182,000 last year, nearly matching the previous two years.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

Nevada Senator Harry Reid released the following statement on the December employment report. According to the Labor Department, unemployment fell to 6.7% and the economy added 74,000 jobs:

"Today's report shows why Republicans must join with Democrats to immediately extend emergency unemployment insurance for the 1.4 million Americans whose benefits were cut off in December. The economy is improving for some, but thousands of Americans in Nevada and across the country still cannot find work no matter how hard they try. These unemployed Americans deserve better than being left hanging by the leaders they sent to Washington to look out for them."

"There are two bills on the table: a one-year extension paid for with a measure supported just last month by both Democrats and Republicans, and a bipartisan, three-month extension that will give us time to continue negotiating. Republicans should join Democrats to pass one of these two measures to help those struggling to make ends meet. This is just simple common-sense, and I hope my Republican colleagues will agree."

Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Reince Priebus released the following statement on the December jobs report:
"There's been much discussion lately about fighting poverty and inequality in America. Too many Americans, a record number in fact, are living below the poverty line. That has to change, and a job is the best anti-poverty program. So it's sad that job creation hasn't been the focus of this White House.
"Today's jobs report reminds us that Obama's policies simply aren't creating nearly enough jobs and people are leaving the workforce because of it. But it doesn't have to be that way. Dozens of job-creating bills from the Republican-led House have gone ignored by the president and Senate Democrats. They have squandered opportunities to empower the private sector and get Americans back to work. And they refuse to acknowledge that ObamaCare is still slowing down job creation.
"Republicans will continue fighting for policies that limit government and expand opportunity. That's how we'll create jobs and improve the lives of American families."

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