White House: Stimulus created 650,000 jobs

October 30, 2009 7:49:11 AM PDT
More than 650,000 jobs have been saved or created under President Barack Obama's economic stimulus plan, the White House said Friday, saying it is on track to reach the president's goal of 3.5 million jobs by the end of next year.

New job numbers from businesses, contractors, state and local governments, nonprofit groups and universities were not scheduled to be released publicly until Friday afternoon. But White House economic adviser Jared Bernstein says officials have been told the figures. When adding in jobs linked to $288 billion in tax cuts, Bernstein says the stimulus plan has created or saved more than 1 million jobs.

The data will be posted on recovery.gov, the web site of the independent panel overseeing stimulus spending.

"It's a great example of the unprecedented transparency, where the American taxpayer can point and click and see their taxes creating jobs," Bernstein said.

Government recovery plans - everything from the $787 billion stimulus to tax credits for buying new homes to government deals on new cars - are credited with helping the economy grow again after a record four straight losing quarters.

But the job market has yet to show signs of recovery, putting pressure on the White House to show that the stimulus was worth its hefty price tag.

When it is released Friday, the new data will be the largest and most complete look at how the stimulus has been spent so far. The White House promised the data would be far more reliable than the first batch of numbers on federal contracts, which the administration initially embraced, then branded a "test run" after thousands of errors were discovered.

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