Unemployment Drops to 6.9 Percent and US Adds a Solid 638,000 Jobs

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Some good news: "WASHINGTON—The U.S. job market showed a burst of strength in October, with employers adding 638,000 jobs and the unemployment rate tumbling to 6.9 percent. Still, the pace of hiring isn’t enough to rapidly soak up the millions of Americans who were thrown out of work by the pandemic recession.

"The job gain suggested that a tentative economic recovery is still intact even as it faces a surging viral outbreak. October’s increase was slightly below the 672,000 jobs that were added in September and far fewer than the 1.5 million in August. But last month’s gain was stronger than it appears: It was held down by the loss of about 150,000 temporary Census jobs.

"Excluding government, businesses added a healthy 906,000 jobs. Job growth was particularly strong in construction, retail, and a category that includes restaurants and hotels.

"The report Friday from the Labor Department said the unemployment rate sank a full percentage point from 7.9 percent in September. Still, the nation now has 10.1 million fewer jobs than it did before the pandemic intensified in March."

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