Business & Economy
PFGBest Questions PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Grassley Press   
Tuesday, 10 July 2012 11:16
Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Senator Chuck Grassley made the comment below after customer accounts at PFGBest, a futures broker, were frozen yesterday due to possible accounting irregularities.

Last year, Senator Grassley participated in oversight hearings of the Senate Agriculture Committee seeking information and accountability for the loss of up to $1.2 billion in MF Global customer funds, including money from Iowa farmers, grain coops and brokers.

Grassley comment:

“Whether there is an issue with segregated customer accounts, or it’s something else, PFGBest served a lot of Iowa customers who are going to have questions about how this is going to affect their accounts.

“From a systemic standpoint, the question is whether there is effective oversight in our commodity trading system.  People need to have confidence in our commodity trading system in order for it to work for farmers and investors the way it’s intended.  I want to know if the existing set up with the National Futures Association and the Commodity Futures Trade Association is working to safeguard this marketplace.  Regulators need to be on the ground working diligently to sort out what's going on, and I would expect the Senate Agriculture Committee to look into this matter in the same way it continues looking into MF Global.”

In Case You Missed It: June Young Adult Unemployment at 12.8 Percent, Signaling More Delayed Dreams and Stalled Careers for Millennials PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by David Pasch   
Tuesday, 10 July 2012 11:05

Generation Opportunity encourages young Americans to call White House and demand an end to policies that stifle job creation, hiring, and opportunity

Washington, DC – (7/10/12) – Generation Opportunity, one of the largest grassroots organizations connecting with young Americans through advanced social media outreach and traditional, boots-on-the-ground organizing, is releasing today the non-seasonally adjusted (NSA) 18-29 unemployment rate data for June:
  • The youth unemployment rate for 18-29 year olds specifically (NSA) for June 2012 is 12.8 percent.
  • The declining labor participation rate has created an additional 1.735 million young adults that are not counted as “unemployed” by BLS because they are not in the labor force, meaning that those young people have given up looking for work due to the lack of jobs.
  • If the labor force participation rate were factored into the overall 18-29 youth unemployment calculation, the actual 18-29-unemployment rate would rise to 16.8 percent (NSA).

Generation Opportunity President Paul T. Conway, former Chief of Staff for the United States Department of Labor and the United States Office of Personnel Management (OPM), responds to the June 2012 jobs numbers:

“For young Americans, through no fault of their own, their story is one of few opportunities, delayed dreams, and stalled careers. Today's unemployment numbers tell the story of millions of young Americans who are paying the price for the failed policies coming out of Washington that have inhibited economic opportunity and job creation.

“Despite the challenges they face, this generation is not asking what their country can do for them. Instead, they stand ready to do more for their country, to continue their service beyond the contributions they have already made as brave defenders of freedom across the globe, as selfless rebuilders of disaster-torn communities here at home, and as confident advocates for greater opportunity for all Americans.

“While leaders in Washington travel to communities to make campaign promises and seek to place blame for the results of their failed policies, young Americans are looking for more than rhetoric.

“In 2012, their message to candidates is clear – we want to build our careers, get on with our lives, and fulfill our dreams. If the only solutions you offer mean fewer jobs and more debt for the country, the stakes are too high to risk our vote on a bad bet.”

Generation Opportunity is encouraging its Facebook fans, as well as its thousands of grassroots supporters across the nation, to call the White House today at (202) 456-1414 and demand that the policies of the last three and a half years, which have stifled job creation, be reversed in favor of policies that free up Americans to create jobs, to hire, and to restore the American tradition of access to opportunity for all.

To see our Facebook call to action, go to:


Generation Opportunity is a non-profit, non-partisan 501 (c)(4) organization that seeks to engage everyone from young adults, to early career professionals, college students, young mothers and fathers, construction workers, current service men and women, veterans, entrepreneurs, and all Americans who find themselves dissatisfied with the status quo and willing to create a better tomorrow.

Generation Opportunity operates on a strategy that combines advanced social media tactics with proven field tactics to reach Americans 18-29. The organization’s social media platforms – “Being American by GO,” “The Constitution by GO,” “Gas Prices Are Too Damn High,” and “Keep Texas Awesome” on Facebook – have amassed a total fan base of more than 3.4 million. All four pages post links to relevant articles and reports from sources ranging from the federal Government Accountability Office (GAO), to The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Brookings Institution, The Wall Street Journal, The Huffington Post, and The Heritage Foundation.

Read about Generation Opportunity here; visit “Being American by GO” on Facebook here, “The Constitution by GO” on Facebook here“Gas Prices Are Too Damn High” on Facebook here, and “Keep Texas Awesome” on Facebook here.

For our Spanish-language page – Generación Oportunidad – click here.

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Braley Statement on President’s Proposal to Extend Middle Class Tax Cuts PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Jeff Giertz   
Tuesday, 10 July 2012 07:40

Washington, D.C. – Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) today released the following statement after President Obama proposed extending tax cuts for Americans making less than $250,000:

“The Bush tax cuts for the rich are a big reason why our nation is facing record budget deficits today.  Extending middle class tax cuts will keep money in the pockets of more Iowa families, helping to drive job creation and economic growth.  Rolling back the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans will help close the deficit.  This is a fiscally responsible compromise that deserves bipartisan support.”


According to the Iowa Department of Revenue, in tax year 2010, 99.2 percent of Iowa taxpayers reported income under $250,000.

The cost of extending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans (those making over $250,000 per year) is estimated at $850 billion over 10 years.


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Governor Quinn Signs Law to Increase Hiring of Veterans and Grow Jobs in Illinois PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Nafia Khan   
Monday, 09 July 2012 13:34

Governor's Initiative to Increase Hiring Veterans Tax Credit; Provides Property Tax Relief for Spouses of Fallen Heroes

CHICAGO - July 9, 2012.  Governor Pat Quinn today signed a new law that will help more Illinois Veterans find employment following their service to our country, an important measure he proposed during his State of the State address in February.

The Hiring Veterans Tax Credit will provide a significant additional tax credit for every unemployed Veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan a company hires, which will help businesses create jobs and give those jobs to the Veterans who have sacrificed so much in serving our state and our country. Unemployment for young returning Veterans in America was 30% in 2011.

"Veterans are committed, disciplined and experienced, and they know how to accomplish a mission," Governor Quinn said. "We need these heroes in our workplaces, and increasing the Hiring Veterans Tax Credit will create more jobs for veterans and grow the economy in Illinois."

Senate Bill 3241, sponsored by State Sen. John Sullivan (D-Rushville) and State Rep. Jerry Costello (D-Belleville), raises the Illinois Hiring Veterans tax credit from 10% to 20% of annual wages and more than quadruples the annual cap from $1,200 to $5,000. Many of these post-9/11 Veterans struggle with higher rates of unemployment compared with their civilian counterparts.

In addition, the new law also honors Gold Star families of fallen heroes across Illinois by making them eligible for the same property tax-relief available in some communities to the families of fallen firefighters and police officers. The law allows counties or municipalities the option of reducing or eliminating property taxes for a surviving spouse of a fallen Illinois soldier killed in Iraq or Afghanistan in the way some choose to honor the families of fallen firefighters and police officers.

“We have a tremendous responsibility to honor the service and sacrifices Veterans and their families have made since 9/11,” said IDVA Director Erica Borggren. “These measures will go a long way towards helping Veterans and the families of fallen service members begin the process of rebuilding their lives.”

President Obama recently announced that more than one million service members will leave the military between now and 2016, with many thousands returning home to Illinois. Many of these young post-9/11 Veterans will be returning to sectors of the economy that were hardest hit by the Great Recession including construction, manufacturing, and transportation industries. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Veterans ages 18-24 nationwide have an unemployment rate roughly twice as high as their civilian peers.

Governor Quinn launched “Operation Home Front” while he was Illinois State Treasurer to give National Guard members and reservists a tool to inform them about their rights during the Gulf War. Most recently, the Governor has expanded Operation Home Front to be a place where active servicemembers and Veterans can learn about the resources available to them and their families, and a place for the public to learn about different ways they can support our troops.

First Lady of the United States Michelle Obama recently joined Governor Quinn as he signed a new law designed to help military spouses more easily find employment when they move to Illinois for military service by granting expedited professional licenses. Illinois is the 23rd state to adopt such legislation.

For more information about benefits for our Veterans, visit or call the Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs at 217-782-6641 or 312-814-2460.


Loebsack Statement on Department of Labor’s June Jobs Report PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Joe Hand   
Friday, 06 July 2012 13:48

Washington, D.C. - Congressman Dave Loebsack today issued the following statement in response to the Department of Labor’s announcement that the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 8.2 percent in June and 80,000 jobs were added.

“Today’s job report makes one thing very clear– we have a long way to go to get the economy back to where it should be. To make matters even worse, Republicans have so far shown no interest in even discussing a comprehensive jobs package.  Instead, they continue to play political games, in which the real losers are Iowa’s middle class families.  I have long said that fixing our economy should not be a partisan fight.  If there is one thing that should bring the two parties together, it is working to create jobs. I have been willing to sit down and work together and the fact that it hasn’t yet happened is disappointing.  It’s time for Congress to put our country and families ahead of politics and get down to the real work that Iowans need to see get done.”


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