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AP Economics Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — The US unemployment rate fell to 7.8 percent last month, dropping below 8 percent for the first time in nearly four years. The rate fell because more people found work, a trend that could impact the presidential election.

The Labor Department says employers added 114,000 jobs in September. The economy also created 86,000 more jobs in July and August than first estimated. Wages rose in September and more people started looking for work.

The revisions show employers added 146,000 jobs per month from July through September, up from 67,000 in the previous three months. The unemployment rate fell from 8.1 percent in August, matching its level in January 2009 when President Barack Obama took office.

The decline could help Obama, who is coming off a disappointing debate against Mitt Romney.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comment on this Story

  • Guest: unemployed in NC

    The job numbers are going down for several reasons. Every year, retailers start the seasonal hiring period for Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. This happens EVERY year at this time. I can tell you, after working many years in retail, the number of people hired this year reflects part-time employees. You can hire twice the number of part-time employees for the price of one full time employee. So the numbers don’t tell you these positions are part-time, seasonal help. They do, however, make the numbers hired appear to be good, when they really aren’t. Nobody can make ends meet on part-time, minimun wages. After Christmas is over, these people will be laid off…..same cycle every year!

    Another reason is, many who have been drawing unemployment have used up all their eligibility time. Once they drop out the system, they are no longer counted. The economy isn’t moving in the right direction! I have been unemployed for a year and actively seeking work. You can’t make me believe that the economy is better. Our savings is gone and we are barely making it from pay day to pay day.

  • John

    I find it rather funny how the GOP, and there devoted followers think… So you’ll use the unemployment rate numbers when they are not favorable for the Democratic President, but when the numbers go down in his favor you call bull****. WOW! it must be fun being so ignorant… The same steps and procedures go into place every month, and every month they come out with a number in the following month they revise this number if need be such as August it was reported that 109,000 jobs were created… well after more information had came in the BLS confirmed that actually they missed 92,000 jobs and the total was 201,000 jobs for August…

    Truth is the economy is moving and in the right direction, and you can’t stand it… so cry me a river.

  • Beerman

    This is just politicking before an election. This number was created by excluding those who have re-entered the workforce in part-time positions. If you look at other, more credible news sites – you’ll see that has been pointed out numerous times – the U-6 rate is still at 14.7% which means even more folks are settling for part-time jobs. So, the fact that there are more folks working at McD’s is not a fair representation of a rebounding economy. Instead, it shows some folks are so desperate, they’ll take anything – even if they can’t make enough to pay their bills.

  • Dr. Archy Cary

    Out of what Cracker Jack box did this guy get his B.S. in Economics?

  • GuestMan.

    This is great news for all the people in the U.S. More people finding work means the economy is starting to come around from the doldrums Bush Lite put us in. Way to go, President Obama!

  • SurfCityTom

    he blames everything else on W, so he will obviously lay the blame for this one @ Bush’s feet.

  • Guest22

    One month below 8% in nearly four years, and you are ready for the band to start playing “Happy Day’s are Here Again”.

    Get Real

  • taxpayer

    Keep on believing Guestman…’cause Obama says it’s so.

  • Guest28470

    Obama had nothing to do with it, like the other person said, companies are hiring for the holiday season, and most of these jobs are temporary. The fact is more people are out of work now than when Bush was in office. Obama has been nothing but a joke and unfortunately whoever gets elected, its probably going to be the same for the next 4 years.


    WOW just in time for the election. How convenient. LOL

    Smoke and mirrors people. !!!!

  • Guest757

    Are you really that influenced by the main stream media.. There was only 119,000 jobs this month ..do the math…where is that number coming from..

    I can tell you the person above is 100% right companies are hiring for seasonal work and don’t forget the people that have no more employment left aren’t counted in that either..

    I guess you should have another glass of kool-aide..

  • What are you smoking GuestMan?

  • taxpayer

    the “devil” is in the details. The Feds “changed” how the unemployment rate is calculated. There are still more unemployed individuals today than there were four years ago.

  • Guest7969

    lets not stretch the truth here…its called THE HOLIDAY SEASON and companies have been hiring for it for the last month!

  • Peyton Garrett

    These figures mean nothing going into a holiday season which by the way, starts earlier every year. Until there is a discernible rise in construction, a lowering of fuel and expendable goods prices and the like, we will be where we have been for a while. I have no confidence in government figures. Too much manipulation. I own a multi-state business and I know what I see. I have no confidence things show any positive change until well into the third quarter next year. Of coarse, that depends on the outcome of the elections.

  • Guest 1907

    Does it really matter whether its “holiday season”. I don’t think a person that was unemployed last month cares whether is “holiday season or not. To some, this Administration will never get credit for anything positive. Instead of being encouraged by some job growth in this country some rather find a way to tear it down, sounds like Fox News reporters.

  • Guestelection

    This would be interesting if it wasn’t the last report before the election. I am sure the numbers were managed so it would make Obama look good. Seasonal hiring is all it is.

  • Das Weibstück

    Our President doesn’t need help looking good, he is. You right wing haters refuse to see it. I hope you all dont blow a gasket on election day.

  • John A. Difloure

    The numbers were cooked. The real number is 14.7. Of the 114,000 jobs added, 67,000 were government jobs and 12,000 were temps. The media still can’t report anything without bias.

  • Guest9743

    It doesn’t matter what kind of jobs they are….the people with these new jobs are able to put food on their tables, pay their mortgages and keep the lights on, I doubt if they are complaining about what kind of job it is and not only that, they are tax paying citizens again.

  • GuestMan.

    posts the same thing all the time the employment rate is talked about. He does not have a clue what he is talking about. He is a parrot for the tea-baggers.

  • Mr.T

    I have many opportunities to travel to most states and many cities.
    I notice when I board a plane, the plane is full. I go out to eat, the restaurant is always full. I go to the grocery store, The store is full and so are the baskets. Gas goes to nearly $4.00 a gallon, but the streets are full and the auto dealers are setting sales records. Major league Baseball just reported 2012 attendance, over 84,000,000 fans this year went to a ballgame, all time record. I turn on the TV, Sunday is my football day. Every stadium in every city is filled to capacity? I go to my local sports bar, you can’t get in place,beer and chicken wings going down like a $2.00 madame.
    Admit it! Times are better
    Vote Obama, build and improve the middle, the big boys can take care of themselves!!

  • Vog46

    “the big boys can take care of themselves”

    And the big boys can pay for their own stadium too


  • GuestMan.

    we’re not hemorrhaging 750,000 jobs a month like we were doing 4 years ago, the banking system is not about to collapse, and we are working our way out of a big recession. It IS better now than it was in October 2008.

  • GuestMan.

    is what happens when you borrow money from China to wage war on Iraq and Afghanistan. In 2002 when you were looking at the world through rose colored glasses, did you even stop to think how all of that was being paid for? Dubya left two wars for which his grandchildren will be paying a long time. Tom here thinks everything bad that has happened since 1969 is Obama’s fault.

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday

    So easy to forget about the $5 trillion debt that the Muslim-loving Socialist has added on top of Bush, eh?

  • Guest6969696969

    It doesn’t matter what kind of jobs they are….the people with these new jobs are able to put food on their tables, pay their mortgages and keep the lights on, I doubt if they are complaining about what kind of job it is and not only that, they are tax paying citizens again.

    PART-TIME Jobs….
    *put food on thier Tables*

    Only with Food-stamp, opps SNAP benifit’s Help…. Been at the Local Food Bank Lately? ASK, people how & where they stand financially…
    Food has been replaced with Gas-o-line, getting back & forth between NEW Job(s)

    **PAY thier Mortgages**

    Paying on a ^up-side~down Home(s)^, That’s Worth LESS than when “They Bought it”, Or some; that used those Monies during the FRAUD BOOM Period in Real-Estate, as a ATM, having More than 1 *Mortgage*…

    **Keep the Lights On**

    Seen this Story yet?
    (Credits, Star News Link)

    Progress Energy are about to cut My Elec. OFF; before the “Due Date Also”… NO,
    I’m not in “DEBT”

    Lets NOT Talk about CFPUA *YET*……

    Let’s just say, I FIFY…..
    WHERE Are the *JOBS* ????
    *** in the Port City=Micky D Jobs et al…..***
    Service Job Industry, Is THIS going to “help” the LOCAL Ecomoney?

    Peace, THRUTH Has NO AGENDA…
    The REAL Un-Employment Rate is around/almost, that of the Great Depression!


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