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NRF welcomes Obama's emphasis on job creation

WASHINGTON — After President Barack Obama delivered his State of the Union address on Tuesday night, the National Retail Federation issued a response regarding his remarks on job creation.

NRF said it welcomed the President's emphasis on job creation, saying that it will help restore the nation's economic state.

"Job creation is our nation's No. 1 priority, and as the industry that supports one out of every four U.S. jobs, retailers stand ready to do their part in putting Americans back to work," NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay said. "Retailers are helping to rebuild the economy, but Washington must get moving to encourage job growth and remove barriers to job creation."

Although NRF supported the idea of job creation, the association did, however, express caution at the President's emphasis on manufacturing.

"We welcome the President's commitment to create jobs in manufacturing, an industry that's critical to a healthy supply chain," Shay said. "But retail and other service industries support far more jobs than manufacturing, and we need economic policy that supports all industries and doesn't favor one sector of the economy over another. We hope 'Made in America' isn't code for protectionist trade policies that only drive up prices for American consumers while doing little to create U.S. jobs."

NRF earlier this month sent an open letter to Obama urging him to call for action on a number of initiatives — sales tax fairness legislation, corporate tax reform, and free and open trade initiatives — that support a strong retail sector as part of the State of the Union address.

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