Financial Regulatory Forum

Obama unveils $33 billion tax credit to boost jobs

By Steve Holland

BALTIMORE, Jan 29 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama on Friday proposed $33 billion in tax credits to coax small businesses into hiring workers as he underscored his commitment to pushing job creation to the top of his agenda.

With public frustration over double-digit unemployment eroding his popularity, Obama has begun rolling out initiatives aimed at backing up his jobs pledge made in his economy-focused State of the Union Address earlier this week.

The latest proposal calls for a $5,000 tax credit for every net new worker hired in 2010. The amount would be capped at $500,000 per firm to make sure that the bulk of the benefits go to small businesses.

“The economy is growing but job growth is lagging,” Obama told workers at a custom-machine plant in Baltimore.

He spoke after the release of data showing U.S. gross domestic product expanded at a faster-than-expected 5.7 percent in the fourth quarter, a trend he hailed as a “stark improvement” compared to economic decline a year ago.

FACTBOX-One year on, US’s Geithner faces big challenges

WASHINGTON, Jan 26 (Reuters) – U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is in the eye of a political storm as he tries to deflect congressional inquiry into his role in bailing out insurer AIG and battle a perception that his influence is diminishing.

The White House on numerous occasions in recent weeks has reiterated its support for Geithner, a former New York Federal Reserve Bank president sworn in as Treasury chief one year ago.

A decision last week by President Barack Obama to start a fight with banks by limiting their size seemed to highlight an expanding policy role for Obama economic adviser and former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker, with Geithner less visible.

Obama sets plan to spur jobs, without busting budget

U.S. President Barack Obama greets workers as he tours Allentown Metal Works in Allentown, Pennsylvania, December 4, 2009.  By Patricia Zengerle

WASHINGTON, Dec 7 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama will lay out policy proposals to combat double-digit unemployment in a speech on Tuesday tackling an economic problem that has become a political drain on his young administration.

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ANALYSIS-Obama faces clamor for action on economy

By Caren Bohan
WASHINGTON, Oct 8 (Reuters) – As the U.S. unemployment rate climbs toward 10 percent, President Barack Obama is facing a rising clamor from within his Democratic party to take new steps to lift the economy and jump-start job growth. (more…)

Fed officials: Economy mending, but weakness persists

By Kristina Cooke and David Beasley
NEW YORK/MACON, Ga., Oct 1 (Reuters) – Federal Reserve officials said on Thursday that while the recession-battered economy is on the mend, it will be weak for a while and the Fed is likely to keep its extensive support policies in place for a while.

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Wall St bonuses spark outrage on Main Street USA

main-street-wwwreuterscom By Steve Eder and Ed Stoddard
NEW YORK/EULESS, Texas, Sept 8 (Reuters) – All you have to do to feel the outrage over the continuing flow of bonuses on Wall Street is to take a walk down Main Street.

Reuters reporters spoke to people in half a dozen towns and cities across the country at the end of last week — and while the survey was far from scientific, it left no doubt many people are upset bankers are still pulling in big bonuses while many people struggle to make ends meet.

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Bernanke sees some economic gain, reviews Fed exit strategy

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben BernankeBy Mark Felsenthal and Alister Bull

WASHINGTON, July 21 (Reuters) – Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke on Tuesday said the outlook for the long-suffering U.S. economy appears to be improving and the U.S. central bank was carefully reviewing ways to withdraw its massive monetary policy stimulus when conditions permit.
But Bernanke cautioned that unemployment was likely to remain high into 2011, and he warned that this could sap fragile consumer confidence and potentially undermine what is expected to be a very gradual recovery. (more…)

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