POSTED: Friday, February 1, 2013 - 10:59am
UPDATED: Friday, February 1, 2013 - 11:16am
The first jobs report of 2013 is in.
Today we get the first jobs report of 2013. Despite improving signs, the economy shrank at the end of last year.
Economists are predicting the U.S. added just over 150,000 new jobs created in January - again below the 200,000 mark that consistently supports growth.
America's 7.8% jobless rate isn't expected to change today.
38,000 new people sought unemployment this week. Growth did a turnaround at the end of 2012.
But Wall Street is up. Housing, personal income and spending are improving.
The economy is on a see-saw, and Republicans say Mr. Obama's having a hard time explaining that. "The President can make any excuse he wants, but it's not going to help Americans find jobs," said Senate Minority Leader, Senator Mitch McConnell, (R-KY).
The President's jobs council expires today. The administration's promising to do more. "The White House will begin a new, expanded effort to work with the business community," said White House Press Secretary Jay Carney.
The Labor Secretary thinks immigration reform will help. "If we can bring those twelve, eleven million out of the shadows, that is over a trillion dollars that is going to be put into our economy over ten years," said Labor Secretary Hilda Solis.
Congress extended the debt ceiling - allowing more borrowing through late May.
But they've yet to prevent big spending cuts coming next month. "Maybe 800,000 civilians will lose their jobs. Bases will have to be closed. Programs will have to be stopped,"said Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
And that could add to the unemployment numbers being announced today.
Tracie Potts, NBC News.