Shutdown costs US 120,000 jobs, says White House

Washington, Oct 23: The partial US government shutdown has cut 0.25 percentage point off the fourth-quarter economic growth and cost the country 120,000 jobs in October, the White House has said.

The government shutdown has translated into 0.25 percentage point off the fourth-quarter US economic growth rate, Xinhua quoted Jason Furman, chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, as saying Tuesday.

"We're 120,000 fewer jobs than we otherwise would have had in the month of October," Furman said.

The federal government was forced into the first shutdown in 17 years Oct 1 after Republicans tried to make a bill to tie funding the government on changing President Barack Obama's signature health care law.

Facing an imminent prospect of a debt default, the bitterly-divided Congress ultimately passed a legislation Oct 16 to lift the debt ceiling through Feb 7, and fund the government through Jan 15.

The temporary deal, however, does not resolve the fundamental divide between the Republicans and Democrats on spending and deficits.

"That's just based on the data we have through Oct 12. So, as we look at more of October, those numbers could change and could potentially get worse," Furman said.

"This all just really underscores how unnecessary and harmful the shutdown and the brinkmanship was for the economy, why it's important to avoid repeating it, and instead consider jobs that are adding to growth, not subtracting," he added.


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