Obama: American businesses sitting on two trillion

Give credit to the NY TImes: they still put whole speeches of note on the front page and on the record. Speaking to the Chamber of Commerce today, President Obama pledged co-operation, but defended sensible regulations (such as we didn't have in the financial meltdown) and added a verbal jab:

So if I've got one message, my message is now is the time to invest in America. Now is the time to invest in America. (Applause.) Today, American companies have nearly $2 trillion sitting on their balance sheets. And I know that many of you have told me that you're waiting for demand to rise before you get off the sidelines and expand, and that with millions of Americans out of work, demand has risen more slowly than any of us would like.

We're in this together, but many of your own economists and salespeople are now forecasting a healthy increase in demand. So I just want to encourage you to get in the game. As part of the bipartisan tax deal we negotiated, with the support of the Chamber, businesses can immediately expense 100 percent of their capital investments. And as all of you know, it's investments made now that will pay off as the economy rebounds. And as you hire, you know that more Americans working will mean more sales for your companies. It will mean more demand for your products and services. It will mean higher profits for your companies. We can create a virtuous circle.        

Here's the money the president is talking about, as a percentage of GDP:

This chart comes from A Macroeconomic Plan for a Green Recovery, an English plan to steer those billions in the corporate mattresses towards green technology investments. 

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