Opinion: 2017 jobs numbers represent a successful first year for President Trump
EDITOR'S NOTE: Boris Epshteyn formerly served as a Senior Advisor to the Trump Campaign and served in the White House as Special Assistant to The President and Assistant Communications Director for Surrogate Operations.
WASHINGTON (Sinclair Broadcast Group) - The final jobs report of 2017 is in and it shows a very strong year for the United States labor market.
Over 2 million jobs were added throughout the year. The unemployment rate ended at 4.1 percent. That is the lowest in 17 years in our country.
It is true that job growth in December was a bit short of expectations, but the overall picture remains extremely positive.
Unemployment among African-Americans hit an all-time low of 6.8 percent. That is especially impressive considering that rate was at 7.9 percent just a year ago.
Unemployment among veterans of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan fell by over 2 percentage points from 5.7 percent to 3.3 percent. That is also a record for that group of veterans.
As the labor market moves closer to full employment, the rate to keep an eye on is wage growth. Wages grew by 2.5 percent between December of 2016 and December of 2017. A goal on wage growth is generally 3 percent year over year increase. My expectation is that due in large part to the wage hikes already announced and those still to come as a result of the GOP tax reform, that goal will be achieved.
Here is the bottom line: the American economy has gained considerable strength in the first year of the Trump administration. These numbers show that a positive impact is being felt across demographics and, vitally, for those who risked their lives for our freedom. President Trump’s policies of deregulation, fair trade and, of course, tax cuts should allow for the good economic news to keep rolling in.