Jobless rate 7.6 pct; 598K job cuts most since ’74: Recession-battered employers eliminated 598,000 jobs in January, the most since the end of 1974, and catapulted the unemployment rate to 7.6 percent. The grim figures were further proof that the nation’s job climate is deteriorating at an alarming clip with no end in sight.
Lawmakers prepare to raise unemployment benefits: Gov. Chris Gregoire’s proposal to boost unemployment benefits could pass the Legislature as early as next week, the majority Democrats in the House and Senate said Thursday.
LTE: Employees and Health Care: Dealing with health insurers adds unneeded stress to small business owners and their employees’ lives. Enacting taxpayer-financed universal health care would probably do more for small businesses and the economy than all the stimulus programs proposed. | Read
More Stimulating: The Gender Gap: Is the stimulus package really better for men than for women? That’s what many prominent feminists, and even some male economists, are saying. Their charge: That the bulk of the work created would be in testosterone-fueled fields like construction, manufacturing, and engineering.
Washington could get $2.02 billion from feds for Medicaid: A new analysis of the amount of additional federal funds that Washington state would receive for FMAP under Medicaid in the Senate version of the stimulus package.