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PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
5:18pm
Thu Apr 16

Report: Illinois Black Unemployment Rate Expected To Fall In 2015, But Still At 'Crisis Level'

Research from the Economic Policy Institute shows Illinois is one of only two U.S. states expected to see "significant reductions" in African-American unemployment levels throughout 2015. Still, African-American jobless rates in Illinois and nationwide are still far higher than where they should be, EPI's report argues.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
3:57pm
Tue Mar 17

Report: Record-Low Number Of Jobless Americans Protected By Unemployment Insurance

The percentage of out-of-work Americans receiving benefits from state unemployment insurance (UI) programs reached a historic low in 2014, a new study shows.

According to the Economic Policy Institute's (EPI) report, the national UI recipiency rate -- the share of jobless people receiving benefits from state UI programs --  dropped to 23 percent as of last December. That's less than the previous record-low UI recipiency rate of 25 percent, which was set in September 1984.

Though researchers from the Washington, D.C.-based think tank do credit the decline in part to an improving economy, they say state UI programs "in many cases failed to assist jobless workers" after the Great Recession.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
3:03pm
Mon Feb 16

Report: Progressive Activism Must Target The Fed, Monetary Policy

A new report from the Economic Policy Institute, a liberal think tank, argues that the Federal Reserve should be receiving more scrutiny from progressive activists.

EPI research associate Thomas Palley wrote the report, which also serves as a primer on the how the Federal Reserve, or the Fed, works and offers a blueprint on how to make monetary policy more "job- and wage-friendly."

Over the three decades prior to the Great Recession, Palley says the Fed, the central bank of the United States, "consistently took care of Wall Street first while not caring much about Main Street."

"Since the Great Recession, there has been some shift toward helping ordinary Americans, but even more is needed, and we fervently hope that [Fed] Chair [Janet] Yellen sees this," said Palley, who also serves as AFL-CIO's senior economic policy adviser.

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