WASHINGTON  - US President George W. Bush assured Americans Saturday that the battered US economy will "pull through" despite continuing housing woes and a spike in inflation. "I have great confidence that our economy will pull through this difficult period, because I have great confidence in the boundless, innovative spirit of the American people," Bush said in his weekly radio address. The assurance came days after the government reported that soaring energy costs had driven US consumer prices up 1.1 percent in June to an annual pace of 5.0 percent. The report by the Labor Department underscored Federal Reserve concerns about rising inflation and sluggish growth " the noxious combination of stagflation " as the economy battles fierce headwinds from financial turmoil and the worst housing crisis in decades. But the president said he remained optimistic about the nation's future. "This is a nation that has faced tough challenges in the past and overcome them, and we will do so again," he said. "With sound policies in Washington and the ingenuity of our citizens, our economy will emerge from this period stronger and better than before." Bush urged Congress to lift a legislative ban on offshore drilling for oil in the country's Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) and expressed concern that so far lawmakers had "done nothing" in this area. "This means that the only thing now standing between the American people and the vast oil resources of the OCS is action from the United States Congress," he argued.