As fears rise that the country will sink into recession in 2013, U.S. President Barack Obama addressed the nation Friday to discuss the necessary policy moves needed overseas and on the home front to protect economies around the globe.
At the White House press conference Friday, President Obama urged European leaders to act to mend the ailing region's escalating financial crisis. The president implored global finance ministers to infuse capital into fragile banks "as soon as possible."
"These decisions are fundamentally in the hands of Europe's leaders and fortunately they understand the seriousness of the situation and the urgent need to act," President Obama said.
The president also pressed upon Congress to pass measures to toughen the American economy. President Obama said the United States could swiftly feel the ripple effects of a potential recession in Europe, which could send the U.S. economy spiraling downward.
President Obama said steep and abrupt cuts to government spending would only stall the pace of the recovery, and in turn, worsen the government's capability to deal with debt and deficits.
"We've got a couple of sectors in our economy that are still weak," said the president. "Overall, the private sector has been doing a good job of creating jobs. The big challenge we have in our economy right now is state and local government hiring has been going in the wrong direction."