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Learning English - Words in the News
04 November, 2005 - Published 10:41 GMT
US economy a year after President Bush's re-election
President George Bush, Oval Office
Re-elected for 2nd term in office last year

It is now a year since President Bush was elected for a second term in office. The US economy was the subject of many disagreements during the election and President Bush made a commitment to improve it if he was re-elected. So how has the US economy performed since then? This report from Andrew Walker:

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During the campaign, Mr Bush's Democratic party opponents repeatedly pointed out what had happened to the job market in his first term. He was the first President since the great depression of the 1930s to seek re-election with fewer people in jobs than when he started. In the meantime, American businesses have been creating more jobs. According to Department of Labor figures, about one and three quarter million more people have jobs now than a year ago. And unemployment, at five point one per cent is relatively low. But there are sceptics who say that the US is still not creating enough jobs to keep up with a growing workforce.

Mr Bush was re-elected with a commitment to reduce the deficit in the government's finances. His critics put much of the blame for the deficit on the tax cuts of his first term, although a short recession just after he took office was also a factor. The deficit has come down by over 90 billion dollars in the last year but there is continuing debate about whether to make further tax cuts and whether to curb some government spending programmes. And there is a very large deficit in US trade with the rest of the world - more than six hundred billion dollars over the last year. Some observers, including the International Monetary Fund, think there is some danger of this deficit coming down in a way that disrupts economies and financial markets around the world.

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Democratic party opponents
Members of the US Democratic political party who are in opposition to President Bush and his policies and wanted their own party to form the US government

pointed out
made it clear

first term
the first period of time when Mr Bush served as President of the US

the great depression of the 1930s
a time when the US economy failed which caused many people to lose all their money; some people even took their own lives when they lost their jobs and homes and the economies of other countries also suffered badly

people who are not convinced about the value or truth of what the government is saying

reduce the deficit
make sure that the government receives more money than it spends so that it will not have as many debts

His critics
people who do not approve of what Mr Bush is doing

a factor
something that also had an effect on the results

to curb some government spending programmes
to limit the amount of money that the government was planning to spend on some of its programmes

people and organisations that watch and keep a record of what is happening

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