U.S. employment growth ground to a halt in June, with employers hiring the fewest number of workers in nine months, dousing hopes the economy would regain momentum in the second half of the year. 
President Barack Obama had this to say about the situation:
"We’ve always known that we’d have ups and downs on our way back from this recession. And over the past few months, the economy has experienced some tough headwinds -- from natural disasters, to spikes in gas prices, to state and local budget cuts that have cost tens of thousands of cops and firefighters and teachers their jobs. The problems in Greece and in Europe, along with uncertainty over whether the debt limit here in the United States will be raised, have also made businesses hesitant to invest more aggressively.
The economic challenges that we face weren’t created overnight, and they’re not going to be solved overnight."
Let’s be clear: Today’s data comes on the heels of a similarly bad report in May and included revised downward data on jobs growth for April and May. This should be a sobering wake-up call to policy makers that addressing the jobs crisis should be priority number one. With Republican intransigence on quickly addressing the debt ceiling, it is increasingly uncertain whether Washington can address the deterioration in economic conditions.
Extending the payroll-tax holiday, propping up the housing market and raising the U.S. debt ceiling are among the measures that would have the fastest short-term impact on the economy, President Barack Obama's top economic adviser said in an interview with Dow Jones Newswires Friday.
Austan Goolsbee, chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, also said it's "off base" for Republicans to suggest Obama's economic policies have failed.
"For those worrying about a slow patch hitting the global economy during the second half of the year, this will provide further ammunition to fuel their concerns," said Simon Derrick, head of currency research at BNY Mellon..
Tags: economy, money
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