THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
|For Immediate Release
||May 5, 2000
UNEMPLOYMENT RATE BREAKS 4 PERCENT BARRIER FOR THE
FIRST TIME IN
OVER THREE DECADES
Today, the Bureau of Labor Statistics Released a New Employment Report
Showing that the Unemployment Rate Has Fallen to 3.9 Percent -- the Lowest In
Over Three Decades. The American Economy Has Created Over 21 Million Jobs Since
January 1993. In 1992, when Bill Clinton was elected President, the American
economy was barely creating jobs, wages were stagnant, and the unemployment
rate was 7.5 percent. President Clintons bold, three-part economic
strategy has focused on three objectives: fiscal discipline, investing in
education, health care, science and technology, and opening foreign markets.
This strategy has contributed to the longest economic expansion in U.S.
- The Unemployment Rate Was 3.9 Percent in April the Lowest in
More Than Three Decades. The unemployment rate fell to 3.9 percent in April.
The last time the unemployment rate was this low was in January 1970 -- more
than thirty years ago. The unemployment rate has remained below 5 percent for
34 months in a row. For women the unemployment rate was 4.0 percent -- the
lowest since 1953.
- 21.6 Million New Jobs Created Under the Clinton-Gore
Administration. Since January 1993, the economy has added 21.6 million new
jobs. Thats the most jobs ever created under a single Administration --
and more new jobs than Presidents Reagan and Bush created during their three
terms. Under President Clinton, the economy has added an average of 248,000
jobs per month, the highest of any President on record. This compares to 52,000
per month under President Bush and 167,000 per month under President Reagan.
- 91 Percent -- 19.7 Million -- of the New Jobs Have Been Created in
the Private Sector. Since President Clinton and Vice President Gore took
office, the private sector of the economy has added 19.7 million new jobs. That
is 91 percent of the 21.6 million new jobs -- the highest percentage since
Harry S. Truman was President and presiding over the post-World War II
- African American and Hispanic Unemployment Rates Are the Lowest on
Record . The unemployment rate for African Americans has fallen from 14.2
percent in 1992 to 7.2 percent in April 2000 -- the lowest rate on record.
Unemployment for Hispanics has fallen from 11.6 percent in 1992 to 5.4 percent
in April 2000 -- the lowest rate on record.
- Most Rapid Growth in Construction Jobs In 50 Years. After losing
662,000 jobs in construction during the previous four years, 2.0 million new
construction jobs have been added during the Clinton-Gore years -- thats
a faster annual rate (5.2 percent) than any other Administration since Harry S.
Truman was President.
- Fastest and Longest Real Wage Growth in Over Three Decades. In the
last 12 months, average hourly earnings have increased 3.8 percent -- faster
than the rate of inflation. The United States has had five consecutive years of
real wage growth -- the longest consecutive increase since the 1960s.
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