News / Economy

US Adds 148K Jobs, Unemployment Falls to 7.2 Percent

US Adds 148K Jobs, Unemployment Falls to 7.2 Percenti
X
October 22, 2013 11:25 PM
U.S. businesses added a modest 148,000 jobs in September, far short of the 180,000 analysts were expecting. Still, job gains were enough to lower the unemployment rate to 7.2 percent, the lowest in nearly five years. But as Mil Arcega reports, the first jobs report since the government shutdown suggests the U.S. economy may be losing steam.
U.S. businesses added a modest 148,000 jobs in September, far short of the 180,000 analysts were expecting.  Still, job gains were enough to lower the unemployment rate to 7.2 percent, the lowest in nearly five years.  But, the first jobs report since the government shutdown suggests the U.S. economy may be losing steam.

Concerns about the tepid U.S. recovery may be hurting the job market.

And the political strife in Washington that led to the first government shutdown in 17 years didn’t help, says economist Gus Faucher at PNC Financial Services.

"So they've been reluctant to hire, and also I think you have concerns about the health care law that might be weighing on hiring as well," said Faucher.

Despite the smaller than expected job gains in September, fewer Americans filed for unemployment benefits, helping to bring the nation’s unemployment rate to its lowest level in nearly five years.

Stocks rose on Wall Street after the release of the government report.

Economist Michael Strain at the conservative American Enterprise Institute says that’s because the modest job growth means the U.S. central bank will be less likely to scale back its bond purchases.

“The likelihood of the Fed tapering in 2013 is pretty close to zero in my opinion," said Strain.

The Fed has been buying $85 billion in government bonds and securities every month to keep interest rates low and encourage consumers and businesses to spend.  Strain doesn’t see the U.S. economy recovering fast enough for the Federal Reserve to change course this year.
 
He acknowledges the Congressional bickering in Washington has hurt the U.S. economy, but he says it has nothing to do with the job slowdown in September.

“The survey week for the data was the middle of September which was before the shutdown and the debt ceiling debate really heated up. So if we’re going to see anything related to the shutdown or the debt ceiling, it would probably be in October’s numbers," said Strain.

On the bright side, construction jobs rose by 20,000 suggesting the housing market continues to rebound.   And government increased hiring by roughly 22,000 jobs last month.

Analysts expect more volatility in the job numbers when October’s employment report comes out -  just a little more than two weeks from now.

You May Like

Video British Fighters on Frontline of Islamic State Information War

It’s estimated that several hundred British citizens are fighting for Islamic State alongside other foreign jihadists More

Pakistan's Political Turmoil Again Shines Spotlight on Military

Thousands of protesters calling for PM Sharif to step down continue protests in front of parliament, as critics fear political impasse could spur another military coup More

Photogallery Ebola Quarantines Spark Anxiety in Liberian Capital

Food prices rise sharply as residents attempting purchases clash with security forces, leaving one person dead More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Native Bees May Help Save Cropsi
X
Deborah Block
August 22, 2014 12:23 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video Native Bees May Help Save Crops

U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video US Defense Officials Plan for Long-Term Strategy to Contain Islamic State

U.S. defense officials say American air strikes in Iraq have helped deter Islamic State militants for the time being, but that a broad international effort is needed to defeat the extremists permanently. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel warned Thursday that the group formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, is better organized, and financially and militarily stronger than any other known terrorist group. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Drug-Resistant Malaria Spreads in Southeast Asia

On Thailand’s border with Myanmar, also known as Burma, a malaria research and treatment clinic is stepping up efforts to eliminate a drug-resistant form of the parasite - before it spreads abroad. Steve Sandford reports from Mae Sot, Thailand.
Video

Video Gaza Conflict, Hamas Popularity Challenge Abbas

The Palestinian unity government of Mahmoud Abbas has failed to convince Hamas to agree to Egyptian-negotiated terms with Israel on a Gaza cease-fire. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports on what the Gaza conflict means for President Abbas, with whom U.S. officials have worked for years on a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Video

Video Nigeria's 'Nollywood' Movie Industry Rolls in High Gear

Twenty years after its birth in a video shop in Lagos, Nigeria's "Nollywood" is one of the most prolific film industries on earth. Despite low budgets and whirlwind production schedules, Nigerian films are wildly popular in Africa and industry professionals say they hope, in the future, their films will be as great in quality as they are in quantity. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Lagos.
Video

Video UN Launches 'Biggest Aid Operation in 30 Years' in Iraq

The United Nations has launched what it describes as one of the biggest aid operations in 30 years in northern Iraq, as hundreds of thousands of refugees flee the extremist Sunni militant group calling itself the Islamic State. As Kurdish and Iraqi forces battle the Sunni insurgents, the fighting has forced more people to flee their homes. Kurdish authorities say the international community must act now to avert a humanitarian catastrophe. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Cambodian American Hip Hop Artist Sings of Personal Struggles

A growing underground movement of Cambodian American hip hop artists is rapping about the struggles of living in urban America. Most, if not all of them, are refugees or children of refugees who came to the United States from Cambodia to escape the Khmer Rouge genocide of the 1970s. Through their music, the artists hope to give voice to immigrants who have been struggling quietly for years. Elizabeth Lee reports from Long Beach, California.
Video

Video African Media Tries to Educate Public About Ebola

While the Ebola epidemic continues to claim lives in West Africa, information technology specialists, together with radio and TV reporters, are battling misinformation and prejudice about the disease - using social media to educate the public about the deadly virus. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.7492
JPY
USD
102.27
GBP
USD
0.5960
CAD
USD
1.0950
INR
USD
61.300

Rates may not be current.