In October, 159,000 jobs were created in the private sector, according to a recent jobs report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The numbers marked the third straight month of increases in private sector job creation, the BLS data show. In August, 143 new private sector jobs were created; the numbers in September show that 101,000 private sector jobs were created. At the same, the Labor Department statistics keepers noted Nov. 5, government payrolls declined.

President Obama, in remarks to reporters Nov. 5, also noted that the economy has grown for 10 straight months with the creation of 1.1 million jobs since December 2009.

Even so, African American unemployment declined from 16.1 percent in September to 15.7 percent in October and African Americans still suffer the highest rate of unemployment reported among all worker groups. The October jobless rate for whites was 8.8 percent.

Despite the glimmer of hope from new jobs, the report said, unemployment has flatlined at 9.6 percent—that’s 14.8 million Americans out of work. Last month, 41.8 percent of the jobless had been out of work for six-and-a-half months or more.

“That’s not good enough,” President Obama said at a Nov. 5 press conference. “That unemployment rate is still unacceptably high and we’ve got a lot of work to do…In order to repair this damage, in order to create the jobs that meet the large need, we need to accelerate our economic growth so we are producing jobs at a faster rate because the fact is, an encouraging jobs report doesn’t make a difference if you are still one of the millions of people looking for work. I won’t be satisfied until everyone looking for a job can find one.”

In his appearance before reporters, the President said he is open to any proposals that will stimulate the economy at a faster pace whether it is tax breaks for small and start-up businesses, research and innovation investments or extended unemployment benefits to “protect those hardest hit.”

‘This is not a gangbusters report but it is very important,’ said Carl Riccadonna, an economist at Deutsche Bank. ‘It shows us that the momentum in employment is building.’??

Obama’s remarks came just before he departed on a 10-day trip to Asia, culminating in participation at the summit of world leaders in Seoul, Korea. That trip included stops in India and Indonesia.

In India, NBC Nightly News reported, the president said he wants to tap into that nation’s “growing economic power to create jobs back home.” In Indonesia, he noted that trade with that Asia economic power is critical to creating jobs in the U.S., according to RTT News, a global economic news service.

Shernay Williams

Special to the AFRO