Better than expected jobs figures for US


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06-08-2011 08:00 AM


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06-08-2011 08:00 AM



06-08-2011 08:35 AM

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2011-08-06 08:00:41

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Better than expected jobs figures for US -

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EMILY BOURKE: The calamitous week on world markets has continued. In the United States, better than
expected jobs figures provided little relief on Wall Street. The unemployment rate fell 0.1 of a
per cent to 9.1 per cent, sparking a short rally.

But volatility ruled the day as the Dow reacted to debt fears in Europe. After a rollercoaster ride
the Dow closed up 61 points at 11,445 points but ended the week with steep losses, leaving analysts
still talking about a double-dip recession.

North America correspondent Lisa Millar reports.

(Sound of opening bell)

LISA MILLAR: The New York stock exchange immediately reacted to the latest unemployment figures -
117,000 new jobs were created last month, 30,000 more than expected.

That brought the unemployment rate down to 9.1 per cent. But it offered no comfort to traders.

TED WEISBERG: The market is obviously sitting on pins and needles here.

LISA MILLAR: Ted Weisberg of Seaport Securities is a Wall Street veteran. He says the job numbers
won't take talk of a double-dip recession off the table.

TED WEISBERG: One number isn't going to make a difference. And the fact is we've had some pretty
disturbing numbers. I mean there was a revision of the GDP number a week ago Friday was very
bearish. It kind of got lost in that embarrassing display of the debt ceiling talks. I mean I'm not
suggesting that we're going to do a double-dip recession but one number is going to make a

LISA MILLAR: Professor Richard Portes from the London Business School is starting to believe
another major downturn for the US could be a reality.

RICHARD PORTES: It's quite possible that the US will go into recession. These new job figures are
positive but within the statistical error of being flat-lining. A number of people have been
talking about a one-third chance of a double dip and I think that's about right

LISA MILLAR: Barack Obama admits the number of jobs being created is nowhere enough to replace the
eight million jobs lost during the recession.

BARACK OBAMA: So when Congress gets back in September I want to move quickly on things that will
help the economy create jobs right now, extending the payroll tax credit to put a thousand dollar
in the pocket of the worker, extending unemployment insurance to help people get back on their
feet, putting construction workers back to work rebuilding America. Those are all steps that we can
take right now that will make a difference

LISA MILLAR: Diane Pitts is a newcomer to the jobless queue. She was laid off two months ago after
25 years with the same company.

DIANE PITTS: I've sent a lot of resumes out and it got no responses at all, so.

LISA MILLAR: How does that make you feel?

DIANE PITTS: Unemployable (laughs), not useful, and so, it's not a good feeling at all.

LISA MILLAR: On a more wider front do you think that the economy is changing at all? Is there any
optimism out there for people like yourself?

DIANE PITTS: No, I don't think so. I think it's getting worse. I don't see anything changing.

LISA MILLAR: That kind of outlook is a pointer to poor consumer sentiment, and it's bad news as
well for a president whose re-election chance depend on a return to optimism.

This is Lisa Millar in Washington for Saturday AM.