How the economy is playing into the U.S. election
Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden chided U.S. President Donald Trump for the jobs report that showed modest gains, saying only wealthy people are feeling the recovery while others are still suffering.
“Donald Trump may be the only president in modern history to leave office with fewer jobs than when he took office,” Biden said in a speech in Wilmington, Delaware.
“The report reinforced the worst fears and painful truths,” Biden said, noting that the wealthy are enjoying a recovery while others are not.
Friday’s job report beat estimates as the unemployment rate dropped to 8.4 per cent, almost two percentage points lower than expected. But the U.S. still leads the world in coronavirus cases and deaths, as more than 185,000 Americans have died from the virus.
Trump celebrated the report on Twitter on Friday morning.
“Wow, much better than expected!” Trump wrote. “Broke the 10 per cent level faster and deeper than thought possible.”
Trump had planned to run for re-election on a strong economy that was devastated by the coronavirus pandemic. But the report will likely bolster Trump’s argument that he is best positioned to lead an economic recovery. The president has often polled better than Biden on economic issues.
Still, the report had warning signs as the pandemic persists and congressional leaders spar over future economic relief packages. The number of permanent job losses rose by more than half a million and gains in the leisure and hospitality industries that spurred job growth in the past few months cooled significantly.