- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 19, 2019

The White House said Tuesday that the share of Americans in the workforce is stabilizing, and President Trump is pushing for policies to encourage even more people to work as baby boomers near retirement.

Rising wages, declining regulatory costs and an increase in blue-collar manufacturing jobs have helped the labor-force participation rate to steady around 63 percent, White House economic officials said, after years of decline in an aging population.

The CEA’s annual Economic Report to the President also shows that businesses are investing and taking out more loans, which officials said is good for the economy and American families. Commercial and industrial loans now exceed $2 trillion — the highest ever recorded.

CEA Chairman Kevin Hassett and others credited the president’s 2017 tax cuts for businesses and individuals with spurring growth. They said real GDP in 2018 would have been 0.9 percent less than the actual rate of 3.1 percent without the tax relief.

Mr. Hassett said the manufacturing sector was hardest hit prior to the Trump administration because “we were the highest-taxed place on Earth.” He pushed back against critics who said the benefits of the tax cuts were a short-term “sugar high.”



“It’s not a sugar high at all,” Mr. Hassett said. “We actually cut taxes to encourage people to build new factories. That’s a fundamental shift.”

While he said a recession next year “is not impossible,” it would be “very unusual” given the current level of capital spending.

The unemployment rate in February was 3.8 percent, near historic lows. Because of that, officials said, more workers are coming “off the sidelines” rather than returning from unemployed status.

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