Unveiled last night in a speech before Congress, The American Jobs Act, if enacted, could “deliver exactly the kind of swift, sharp jolt the U.S. economy needs,” according to top economists.
Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics, said Obama’s $447 billion plan would likely cut the unemployment rate by a percentage point, adding 1.9 million jobs and growing the economy by 2 percent.
House Republican leaders were positive in their statements following the speech, Speaker Boehner concluding the plan “merits consideration.” Eric Cantor told reporters, “I do think there are policy areas we can agree on,” and called for passage of those parts right away.
Economists at consultancy Macroeconomic Advisers estimate the combination of tax incentives and infrastructure spending would create at least 1.3 million jobs in a matter of a few months, boosting this year’s economic growth by 1.3 percentage points. For next year, they forecast the creation of an added 800,000 jobs, bringing the total to 2.1 million. All else equal, that’s enough to shave more than a percentage point off the U.S. unemployment rate, which now stands at 9.1 percent.