President Barack Obama’s advisers have discussed seeking a temporary cut in the payroll taxes businesses pay on wages as they debate ways to spur hiring amid signs that the recovery is slowing, according to people familiar with the matter.
The idea, which is in preliminary stages of discussion, is among several being talked about at the White House as the economy holds center stage for the administration and Congress, the people said on condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations. Theunemployment rate in May rose to 9.1 percent, the highest level this year.
The talks reflect the political constraints the White House is operating under with the Republican majority in the U.S. House pushing to cut federal spending. A hiring stimulus based on a tax break for employers may appeal to Republican lawmakers, many of whom have called for measures to help businesses.