“Obviously, we’re experiencing some headwinds,” Obama said at a joint news conference with visiting German Chancellor Angela Merkel. He said it was unclear whether the latest unemployment report, which showed a slowdown in job growth, was a one-month disappointment or part of a longer trend.
But Obama said his administration was taking a range of steps to boost the economy, and that the nation is bound for long-term economic growth.
“We are on the path of a recovery but it’s got to accelerate,” he said.
Taking note that economic turmoil has roiled both sides of the Atlantic, Obama added: “Recovery from that kind of body blow takes time.”
“Our task is to not panic, not overreact.”
The economy is the overarching issue as Obama heads into a 2012 re-election campaign, and a Washington Post-ABC News poll released Tuesday found that disapproval with how Obama is handling the economy and the deficit has reached a new high.
Mindful of that sentiment, Obama tried to project both confidence and empathy for those still feeling economic pain: “I’m not concerned about a double-dip recession. I am concerned about the fact that the recovery that we’re on is not producing jobs as quickly as I want it to happen.”
Obama also said he was concerned that a Greek default on its debt could have disastrous implications for the US economy, but he signalled that it was a problem for Europe to solve, adding that Germany and other European countries needed to act together to help Greece stabilise its economy.
“We think it would be disastrous for us to see an uncontrolled spiral and default in Europe because that could trigger a whole range of other events,” he said.
(Parts of this article were written with content submitted in a Yahoo News publication)