Throughout this week on Speaker.gov, we will be highlighting ways Americans are better off now, as Speaker Ryan discussed in a recent speech at the National Press Club. First up, the economy.

The good times: “I view this as the strongest labor market in a generation. These really are the good times,” Andrew Chamberlain, chief economist at Glassdoor, said after the nation’s unemployment rate dropped to its lowest level since 1969.

3 in 4: “Three in four voters rate both the national economy and their own local economy as very or somewhat good,” according to CBS News.

Before: “Seven Years Later, Recovery Remains the Weakest of the Post-World War II Era” (The Wall Street Journal, 7/29/16)
After: “The U.S. economy grew at a strong 4.2 percent annual rate in the April-June quarter, the best showing in nearly four years. Growth stayed on track to produce its strongest gain in more than a decade. . .” (CBS/AP, 8/29/18)

What it’s all about: With broad and inclusive growth, more people are leaving their jobs voluntarily to find better ones. People with disabilities are finding more opportunities. Less experienced workers have their best shot at a job in years. “It makes me feel on top of the world,” said Jill Whitehead, who saw her summer job turn into a permanent one as part of the best job market in years.

Overcoming the ‘yeah, but’s. Throughout this year, this economic turnaround has continued to defy the skeptics. There was the “but wages still lag” phase. Well, now wages and benefits are growing at their fastest rate in 10 years. There was the “but productivity still lags” phase. Well, now productivity is rising at its fastest rate in three years.

A better way: Tax reform gets a lot of the attention, but we also delivered on financial reform to help unlock credit for small businesses and families, record regulatory relief to lift the tangle of red tape that was suffocating businesses, and long-overdue improvements to our nation’s infrastructure.

Better off now:Today, our country is turning the corner. American families are better off now. The economy is growing. At more than twice the rate two years ago. Wages and benefits are up, growing at their fastest rate in 10 years. Job openings are at a record high. Consumer confidence is near a record high. Productivity. Manufacturing. Retail sales. Home sales. All of these things are up. And, the nation’s unemployment rate has just dropped to a 49-year low.” Watch the clip.