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Obama economist says long-term brighter

WASHINGTON, June 5 (UPI) -- A top Obama administration economist said Sunday people should not jump to conclusions over the monthly U.S. jobs reports that have become political fodder.

Austan Goolsbee, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, said Friday's disappointing number had offset the previous month's better-than-expected report, but a more accurate picture comes from longer-term analysis.

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"I say ... the same thing I said one month ago when it came in the opposite, 100,000 above expectations, and that is, let's not conclude too much of anything from one report," Goolsbee said on ABC's "This Week with Christiane Amanpour." "Let's look at what's happened over six months."

Goolsbee characterized the U.S. economy as one on a slow climb after a freefall that had the nation teetering on the brink of a depression. He said outside pressures such as Japan's earthquake and higher gasoline prices were "stiff headwinds," but the administration had enacted tax policies that should clear the road.

"Our effort now as a government should be to get the private sector, to help them stand up and lead the recovery," he said. "The government is not the central driver of recovery."

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