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January 8, 1999

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We can now say with confidence that our peacetime economic expansion is the longest in history. And it is different than most past expansions. This time, the expansion is inclusive, not exclusive. This time, our prosperity belongs to the many, not merely to the few. This time, a rising tide truly does lift all boats.

President Bill Clinton
January 8, 1999

Today, President Clinton will address the Detroit Economic Club, where he will announce that unemployment dropped to 4.3 percent in December, the lowest it has been in nearly 30 years and that the American economy is now in its 93rd consecutive month of peacetime expansion, an all-time record.

The Clinton-Gore Administration Has Helped Create Nearly 18 Million New Jobs. Five years ago, President Clinton and Vice President Gore put in place a bold three-part economic strategy to: (1) cut the deficit, help reduce interest rates, and spur business investment; (2) invest in education, health care, and technology so that America was prepared to meet the challenges of the 21st Century; and (3) open markets abroad so that American workers would have a fair chance to compete and win across the globe. Under the economic leadership of President Clinton and Vice President Gore:

  • 17.7 Million New Jobs Have Been Created -- 378,000 Were Added Last Month Alone. Since President Clinton and Vice President Gore took office, the American economy has added 17.7 million new jobs. Last month alone, 378,000 more jobs were added to the economy;
  • Unemployment Is At A 29-year low. In December, the unemployment rate dropped to 4.3 percent, its lowest level in 29 years. The unemployment rate has now been below 5 percent for the last 18 months;
  • Private Sector Employment Is Booming. Since 1993, the private sector has added 16.3 million new jobs, with over 2.5 million created in the last year alone. Under President Clinton and Vice President Gore, 93 percent of new jobs have been in the private sector, the highest percentage in 50 years.

The Longest Peacetime Economic Expansion In American History. The President's Council on Economic Advisors (CEA) now believes that December will mark the 93rd consecutive month of economic expansion, making it the longest peacetime expansion in American history. Today's CEA report shows that our current growth is more sound and helping more people than prior expansions:

  • Inflation Has Declined During This Economic Expansion. Inflation during this expansion has declined as the expansion has continued, compared to other periods of economic expansion in the 1980s and 1960s, when inflation rose as the expansion continued, ultimately contributing to the end of the expansion;
  • An Investment-Led Expansion. The contribution of investment during this expansion has been almost twice as large as during prior expansions. In the last six years, business investment has grown at an annual rate of 12 percent, the fastest in more than three decades;
  • Real Wages Continue To Rise. During this economic expansion, hourly wages have risen 5 percent, when adjusted for inflation. Over the last year, real hourly wages have increased about 2.5 percent, the fastest growth in 20 years.

Council of Economic Advisers Report:
Latest Jobs Report Indicates That the Current Expansion Has Achieved Record Length

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January 8, 1999