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Fewer Jobs Than Expected In Sept., But Jobless Rate Fell

Filed by KOSU News in Business.
October 22, 2013

The nation’s jobless rate ticked down to 7.2 percent in September from 7.3 percent in August, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said Tuesday.

But just 148,000 were added to public and private payrolls. That’s below the 180,000 economists expected. It’s yet another sign that job growth remains soft.

We’ll have more from the report, as well as reactions to it, as the morning continues. Hit your “refresh” button to be sure you’re seeing our latest updates.

Update at 8:57 a.m. ET. News Could Convince Fed To Hold Off:

As The Wall Street Journal writes, the Federal Reserve “surprised some investors by not starting a pullback in its $85 billion-a-month bond buying program after its September meeting. The central bank is not expected to make any changes until it can assess the full effects of the 16-day government shutdown and debt-ceiling fight on the broader economy. But a weakening jobs picture could force it to push out this date out further.”

The Fed has been buying bonds to push money in to the economy and spur growth.

Update at 8:50 a.m. ET. Jobless Rate Lowest Since Late 2008:

At 7.2 percent, the unemployment rate is now the lowest since November 2008′s 6.8 percent. The jobless rate is still about 3 percentage points above its recent low — the 4.4 percent of late 2006 and early 2007. The economy officially slipped into recession in December 2007 and didn’t begin its slow recovery until June 2009. The unemployment rate’s recent peak was 10 percent, in October 2009.

Update at 8:40 a.m. ET. Good And Bad News In The Revisions:

For the second report in a row, BLS sharply reduced its estimate of job growth in July. It initially thought employers had added 162,000 jobs to their payrolls that month. In a subsequent report, it pegged growth at 104,000 jobs. Tuesday, it said employers had added just 89,000 jobs in July.

But at the same time, BLS on Tuesday revised up its estimate of the job growth in August. Initially, it said there had been 169,000 jobs added. Now, it estimates there were 193,000 more people on payrolls. [Copyright 2013 NPR]

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