President Obama saw Friday's unemployment numbers as a positive glimmer of what could be, but cautioned there will be more hardship ahead.

"Today we received additional news suggesting that we are climbing out of the huge hole that we found ourselves in," he said while visiting a business in Lanham, Maryland to announce new initiatives to help small businesses.

"These numbers, while positive, are a cause for hope, but not celebration, because far too many of our neighbors and friends and family are still out of work." Besides, the President added, the numbers will continue to fluctuate.

The nation's unemployment rate fell from what many felt was the symbolically significant number of 10% to 9.7% in December.

However, Mr. Obama and his advisors still see the economic reality, they say. Council of Economic Advisors Chair Christina Romer admitted today, "Obviously, the unemployment rate remains unacceptably high."