By Philip Elliott, Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. is likely to average 95,000 more jobs each month this year, while personal savings will remain high as credit remains tight, according to a White House report released Thursday.
The Council of Economic Advisers also trumpeted the $787 billion economic stimulus package, which it said has saved or created about 2 million jobs.
In a message to Congress, President Barack Obama pointed out that the economy he inherited was losing 700,000 jobs each month.
"I can report that over the past year, this work has begun. In the coming year, this work continues," Obama said in a letter he sent to the Capitol attached to his economic update to lawmakers. "But to understand where we must go in the next year and beyond, it is important to remember where we began one year ago."
Casting its first year as positive, the administration's 462-page report served as a summary of its logic and a pitch for Obama's future agenda. The economic report to the president is an annual document prepared by the Council of Economic Advisers, the White House's three-person internal thinktank. It includes a summary of trends and internal predictions for economic indicators. By law, it must be sent to Congress within 10 days of the White House's budget proposals.
Recognizing that voters were likely to hold Obama responsible for the economy, the White House team cast blame on their predecessors and unpopular Wall Street bankers.
"I think there's just no way to understate how huge the economic challenges facing the country have been this past year," said Christina Romer, head of the Council of Economic Advisers. "So everything obviously from the financial crisis, the terrible recession, but the longer-run problems — the stagnating middle-class incomes, soaring health care costs, the failure to invest in education, innovation, clean energy — we certainly inherited an economy with a number of economic problems."