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Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez
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News Release

OPA News Release: [02/04/2011]
Contact Name: Bennett Gamble
Phone Number: (202) 693-4676
Release Number: 11-0164-NAT

Statement of Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis on January employment numbers

WASHINGTON — Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis issued the following statement on the January 2011 Employment Situation report released today:

"The unemployment rate declined by 0.4 percent to 9.0 percent, down 0.8 percent in the last two months. The private sector added 50,000 jobs, and revisions indicate 1.1 million jobs were added in 2010. While there is still work to be done, the data show the unemployment rate fell in January because more people are working and not because people are leaving the labor force.

"The drop in the unemployment rate is encouraging, as is the continued growth in private sector jobs. But we know we have to do more, and following up on the legislation the president signed in December, he has outlined an aggressive agenda to win the future by out-innovating the rest of the world.

"President Obama's recent tax package allows all businesses, including manufacturers, to write off the entire cost of their investments in 2011, a crucial incentive to 2 million businesses — large and small — to invest and create jobs in the U.S. The tax package also includes a two-year extension of the Research and Development tax credit and other tax incentives to support business expansion.

"And we continue to create jobs. Today, in addition to the increase in start-ups and other small businesses, we are encouraged to see the manufacturing sector add 49,000 and retail trade added 28,000. The health care industry also continues to add employment.

"In order to win the future, we must educate our workers, invest in science, and build the infrastructure our companies need to succeed. Innovation will be a key driver of the economy as we strengthen America's position as home to the world's best new businesses and industries, and the best jobs.

"I am encouraged by the drop in the unemployment rate and convinced that the actions taken by the administration have helped drive this recovery. We know we have a ways to go. And I look forward to working with the president to win the future for American workers."