In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner addressed the Congressional Hispanic Caucus today and spoke about the economy and its effect on Latinos.
Geithner did not shy away from addressing the high unemployment rate amongst Hispanics, currently at 12% versus the national average of 9.5%. To address this issue he asked the congressional caucus for support of the Small Business Jobs Bill that will cut taxes and make loans available to small businesses thus resulting in job creation. Hispanic ownership of small businesses is the fastest growing segment and Hispanics are more likely to hire other Hispanics in their business, according to Geithner.
Geithner did not address any elements of immigration reform and whether that would be an economic boom or bust to the economy. However, he did not leave the dais without highlighting the benefits of President Barrack Obama’s economic policies on Latinos.
He identified financial reform, passed earlier this year, as critical to the financial prosperity of Hispanic families labeling it a “Major Victory for Latino Families.” Geithner highlighted a little known aspect of financial reform, the creation of a federal watchdog commission regulating firms providing remittance services. Noting that many Hispanic families send remittances to relatives in their native country of country’s where other family members reside.