The unemployment rate dropped one-tenth of a point in October to 9.0% . Job creation was less than expected. Only 80,000 new jobs were added to the economy last month.
U.S. employment climbed in October at the slowest pace in four months, illustrating the “frustratingly slow” progress cited by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke this week.
The 80,000 increase in payrolls was less than forecast and followed gains in the prior two months that were revised up by 102,000, Labor Department figures showed today in Washington. The unemployment rate fell to a six-month low of 9 percent from 9.1 percent even as the labor force expanded.
The crisis in Europe and looming deadline on U.S. budget talks may be prompting companies to hold back on concern failure to reach resolutions will put the global recovery at risk. Fed policy makers project the jobless rate won’t drop under 8 percent until 2013 at the earliest, one reason why Bernanke this week said additional stimulus “remains on the table.”
“We’re making progress at a very slow pace,” said John Silvia, chief economist at Wells Fargo Securities LLC in Charlotte, North Carolina, who projected an 85,000 gain in payrolls. “It indicates continued consumer spending, getting a little better over time. The labor market is consistent with moderate economic growth.”
Obama is the worst jobs president since the Great Depression.