Washington: The US is not facing another recession but the nation is in danger of not having a recovery that is fast enough to deal with a genuine unemployment crisis, President Barack Obama has said.
"You've got an unemployment rate that is still too high, an economy that's not growing fast enough," Obama said in an interview with CBS News recorded during his recent bus tour of three American states.
"I don't think we're in danger of another recession, but we are in danger of not having a recovery that's fast enough to deal with what is a genuine unemployment crisis for a whole lot of folks out there," Obama who is seeking a second term in the White House next year, said.
Obama embarked on a three-state bus tour last week that took him to Iowa, Illinois and Minnesota as his approval ratings dipped amid continued uncertainty about the economy.
Reflecting on the recent Wall Street crash, Obama argued that outside factors like the European debt crisis, Japan's tsunami and the Arab spring had hit economic growth.
"What I think the markets were reacting to is the fact that the economy has not grown as quick as it needs to. They've have been a lot of headwinds, the European debt crisis, Japan, high gas prices from the Arab spring," he said.
"And so if the economy is not growing faster than two per cent it means unemployment's not coming down as quick as it needs to. And what a lot of folks are worried about is that the recovery that we have been on is stalling or not moving as quickly as it needs to," he said.
He said during the last two and a half years, he has given priority to how to generate more employment and grow the economy hit by the economic downturn.
"We had made some progress. We've seen over 2 million jobs created over the last 17 months. But clearly over the last six months there've been a lot of headwinds on the economy and we have not seen the kind of growth that ensure the unemployment rate coming down as fast as it needs to," he said.
Obama said he will let the American people judge whether it is the kind of balanced plan that he has been talking about for the last couple of months.
"We can fix these problems. Compared to a lot of countries around the world the adjustments we have to make are so much more modest. And I think that's part of the reason why the American people are so frustrated. It'd be one thing if we had the kinds of problems that a Greece did where, you know, you potentially have to completely restructure your economy and your society. That's not the situation here," he said.
First Published: Sunday, August 21, 2011, 22:57