Initial filings drop for second straight week

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Department of Labor announced today that new claims for unemployment insurance dropped by 10,000 for the week ending April 9, signaling sustained strength in the U.S. labor market. This report marks the second straight week that jobless claims have shown five figure declines and suggests that the long-term positive trend in the employment market is holding firm.

“The U.S. economy continues to add jobs at a healthy and sustainable pace,” said ATR President Grover Norquist. “President Bush’s tax cuts have allowed small businesses and investors to expand and create employment opportunities for more and more Americans.”

The U.S. job market has been strong for nearly two years. Since the Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act passed in June of 2003, the U.S. economy has generated 3.1 million new jobs. In the last 13 months alone, 2.5 million jobs have been created, and the nationwide unemployment rate stands at 5.2 percent. Prior to the 2003 tax cut, unemployment stood at 6.3 percent, but steady job growth has driven the rate down to a figure well below the average of the 1970’s, 80’s and 90’s.

“President Bush’s tax cuts have a proven track record of job creation and must be made permanent.” continued Norquist. “Furthermore, Congress needs to enact tort reform and permanently fix Social Security to keep the economy and jobs flowing.”