Barack Obama did not have a good day yesterday. First Mitt Romney announced plans to visit the hurricane battered Gulf Coast prompting the president to hastily arrange his own trip to the area. In that brief post GOP convention moment America was already seeing signs of Mitt Romney leading and Barack Obama following. Things got worse. Obama's Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke spoke at the Fed’s annual gathering in Jackson Hole, Wyoming yesterday. What he had to say confirmed what Republicans said all week in Tampa about the sorry status of the jobs environment.
Mr Bernanke was more glum than ever as he provided fresh details on the disappointing state of the United States economy. His speech came on the heels of news that jobless claims rose again last week. Bernanke's plain talk on the excruciatingly sluggish economy raised market expectations of more Fed action to get the economy off of life support in September.
“Taking due account of the uncertainties and limits of its policy tools, the Federal Reserve will provide additional policy accommodation as needed to promote a stronger economic recovery and sustained improvement in labor market conditions,” Bernanke said.
Bernanke also described the economy as, “painfully slow” in his speech.
Bernanke issued a disturbing warning to the millions Americans looking for jobs. “Unless the economy begins to grow more quickly than it has recently, the unemployment rate is likely to remain far above levels consistent with maximum employment for some time,” Bernanke said.