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Microsoft CEO optimistic on jobs

Friday, July 08, 2011 - 02:11

July 8 - Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer is optimistic information technology will help boost overall productivity and hiring. Jill Bennett reports.

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A small conference room in New York City played host to a wealth of innovation and inspiration Friday. The finalists in the Imagine Cup Challenge, led by Microsoft, presented new technologies designed to help address some of the world's toughest problems. Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, on hand to talk with the finalists, sees bright futures for these college students, despite the overall job picture. SOUNDBITE: STEVE BALLMER, CEO, MICROSOFT (ENGLISH) SAYING: "The amount of new innovation, that we're seeing whether it is new devices or it's the move to the cloud, whether it is things that are social, it is really phenomenal what we are seeing and certainly the jobs market is actually competitive in the tech industry despite the general tepid, tepidness let's say, in the overall jobs job situation." Tepid is an understatement. A meager 18,000 jobs were added in June, the worst monthly payroll gain since last September. The unemployment rate ticked higher to a six-month high of 9.2%. But Ballmer contends the tech sector will help to lead the overall job market out of the doldrums. SOUNDBITE: STEVE BALLMER, CEO, MICROSOFT (ENGLISH) SAYING: "I do see the potential for economic growth around the world propelled by the next generation of productivity and innovation coming out of information technology, I think our industry is a tide that can raise the boat, the water level so to speak, in all industry for jobs and productivity." Don't expect a quick turnaround warns White House Economic Adviser Austan Goolsbee: SOUNDBITE: AUSTAN GOOLSBEE, CHAIRMAN, WHITE HOUSE COUNCIL OF ECONOMIC ADVISERS (ENGLISH) SAYING: "You did see some pretty serious headwinds at this start of this year with natural disasters, oil prices, European financial matters and now some of the discussions about default and other uncertainties in the U.S. Those things slowed the growth rate down to 1.8 percent and it's because of that slowdown that you see a slowdown in the hiring rate." That slowdown is something these students don't have to think about just yet, but for the 14 million unemployed, it is a very sobering reality. Jill Bennett, Reuters.

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Microsoft CEO optimistic on jobs

Friday, July 08, 2011 - 02:11