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Obama applauds economic progress in January jobs report

President Obama on Friday touted the January jobs report that came out in the morning that said while the economy added fewer jobs than expected, the unemployment rate has fallen to an eight-year low and wages are rising.

"After reaching 10 percent in 2009, the unemployment rate has now fallen to 4.9 percent. This is the first time that the unemployment rate has dipped below five percent in almost eight years," Mr. Obama told reporters in the White House briefing room. "Most importantly, this progress is starting to translate into bigger paychecks."

The economy added 151,000 jobs in January and the unemployment rate has fallen to 4.9 percent. The president explained that the unemployment rate has dropped because more people are entering the workforce because they're feeling more confident and finding jobs.

"The United States of America right now has the strongest, most durable economy in the world," he said, which he said is "inconvenient" for Republican stump speeches as they prepare for Tuesday's New Hampshire primary.

"That doesn't mean we don't have more work to do," he added.

Mr. Obama said the economic progress is a testament to American workers and businesses "being resilient and sticking to it."

He reiterated that the U.S. has recovered from "worst economic crisis since the 1930s" and stated that if the U.S. had adopted policies proposed by Republicans, the recovery wouldn't have happened as quickly.

With the 2016 presidential election nine months away, it's a critical year for the economy because the outcome will largely hinge on how well the nation is doing financially and whether Americans are feeling more financially secure.

On Tuesday, the president will send his final budget blueprint to Congress and he said it will include proposals that create more opportunities for education and job-training and an emphasis on clean energy to create more jobs.

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