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U.S. President Barack Obama says the higher U.S. unemployment rate in September shows that economic recovery will not be smooth or easy. The president also expressed regret that Chicago did not win the 2016 Summer Olympics bid.


Unemployment in the United States reached 9.8 percent in September, and President Obama says employment is often the last indicator that a recession is over. 

"Since the period last winter when we were losing 700,000 jobs per month, we have certainly made some progress on this front. But today's job report is a sobering reminder that progress comes in fits and starts, and that we are going to need to grind out this recovery, step by step," he said.

At the White House Friday, Mr. Obama acknowledged that employers cut more jobs than expected last month, which means he has more work to do.

"And I want to let every single American know that I will not let up until those who are seeking work can find work, until businesses that are seeking credit are able to get credit and thrive, until all responsible homeowners can stay in their homes," he said.

The president had just returned to Washington from Copenhagen, where he and first lady Michelle Obama unsuccessfully campaigned for the 2016 Summer Olympics to be awarded to Chicago.

Mr. Obama says he called Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, to congratulate him on winning the Olympics for Rio de Janeiro.

The president says he wishes he had brought back better news from the International Olympic Committee vote, and has no doubt that Chicago put together the strongest bid it could. And Mr. Obama is defending his decision to travel to the Danish capital to make Chicago's case. 

"I believe it is always a worthwhile endeavor to promote and boost the United States of America and invite the world to come see what we are all about," he said.

Some U.S. critics say Mr. Obama should have stayed home and concentrated on solving domestic problems.

Despite not getting the 2016 games, the president is inviting people to visit the United States anyway.