NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- The government's Recovery Act is responsible for between 2.2 million and 2.8 million jobs through the first quarter of 2010, according to the latest stimulus report from President Obama's chief economic adviser.
The report, from the White House's Council of Economic Advisers, says the $787 billion economic stimulus is on track to create or save 3.5 million jobs by the end of the year.
"From tax cuts to construction projects, the Recovery Act is firing on all cylinders when it comes to creating jobs and putting Americans back to work," Vice President Joe Biden said in a statement.
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which was signed into law in February 2009, is the largest simulus program in the nation's history. While the Obama administration credits the stimulus with lifting the United States from the recession, Republican critics also look to the nation's 9.7% unemployment rate as proof that the act fails to create long-term jobs.
So far $525 billion of the simulus money has been committed to specific projects and $370 billion has been paid out.
More than $110 billion went to tax relief through credits for first-time homebuyers, for college expenses and for energy-efficient home improvements. Another $90 billion went to unemployment benefits and food assistance through the end of March.
The report is based on a mathematical formula that calculates the number of jobs likely saved or created by stimulus money. The government also collects reports showing the actual number of jobs directly funded by stimulus spending, with the next one due to be released April 30.
The midterm elections are around the corner, and the economy remains a top concern. With unemployment down and inflation low, why do people still feel the economy stinks? More
Dressing up in crazy costumes, traveling the world, posing for photos -- and getting paid to do it. Here are journal entries from a day in the life of professional "cosplay" character, Linda Le. More