9 Dec 2009

US employment boost announced

3:45 pm on 9 December 2009

US President Barack Obama has outlined a number of proposals aimed at boosting employment, including winding up the $US700 billion bank rescue fund.

Mr Obama says the remaining money from the Troubled Asset Relief Programme (TARP) could be used to facilitate lending to small businesses.

In a address at the Brookings Institution think tank, he also called for tax cuts for small businesses, which he says created two-thirds of new jobs.

Mr Obama proposed a one-year elimination of capital gains tax on new investments and adding a new tax cut to encourage small business hiring in 2010.

Critics in the Republican Party say reusing the funds is illegal, as this is not what the money was intended for.

The current unemployment rate in the United States is 10%.