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New jobs and energy gains helping lift US economy

WASHINGTON (AP) - A stronger-than-expected April rebound in job creation and recent dramatic discoveries of vast U.S. oil and gas reserves are helping to lift the American economy out its long funk.

The economic advances also are drawing attention to the importance of private-sector innovation rather than government policy in fostering growth.

The Labor Department's report that payrolls expanded by 165,000 jobs last month and the unemployment rate declined to a four-year low of 7.5 percent does not represent explosive job growth by any measure.

Yet that report offers a big sigh of relief to President Barack Obama and his Democratic allies in Congress.


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