Unemployment Holds Steady Despite Fiscal Cliff

The national unemployment rate remained steady at 7.8 percent in December despite the looming threat of going over the fiscal cliff.

The nation's unemployment rate didn't rise in December, even though the overwhelming threat of going over the fiscal cliff loomed large throughout the month.

Unemployment remained steady at 7.8 percent, according to data released Friday, the Hartford Courant reported, and payroll grew by 155,000, slightly less than the 161,000 jobs created in November.

The report predicts a 2 percent growth in the economy for 2013, which is not seen by experts as enough to make a significant dent in the recession.

That rate of growth will keep the country "just muddling through," Tom di Galoma, managing director at Navigate Advisors in Stamford told The Courant.

It could have been worse. Had Congress not come to a last-minute deal to avoid the fiscal cliff, taxes would have rose for almost everyone and thousands of people could have lost their unemployment benefits.

In Connecticut, the unemployment rate for November (the most current figures available) was 8.8 percent.

Lucy Conti January 07, 2013 at 10:56 PM
Unemployment did not improve in the fall of 2012. There has been a job freeze in CT since Hurricane Sandy. Don't believe the hype. CT doesn't care about finding good people jobs in this state
Francis January 11, 2013 at 12:53 AM
Most real estate agents in CT are not paid a salary. They are self-employed licensed professionals. Despite hundreds of us who are now on food stamps and Medicaid, we never show up on unemployment charts. Some of the younger guys have been lucky enough to find second jobs to hold them over until the housing market recovers. The older gents, like me, may be applying in person and online for other jobs, but WalMarts, Target, Home Depot, Staples, Best Buy, Stop and Shop... well, given a choice, they obviously prefer hiring young men 18 - 30 over mangey mutts like me. I guess they do believe that you can't teach an old dog new tricks. So here I am, working harder than ever and making less money per week than I did when I was 18. You know what really terrifies me? I worked for a Ct municipality for 20 years, I collect about $350 a month pension thru the State. But this pension, as well as many other pensions that the State sends checks out for... well, it was never fully funded by the city I worked for. One of these days the State of Ct may very well say: "Sorry... Can't do it anymore" and then many thousands of people, retired or not, are going to find themselves out in the cold.


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