The U.S. economy has a net loss of 159,000 jobs in September, the biggest drop in five years.

Friday's report from the Labor Department also says the unemployment rate held steady at 6.1 percent.

This report shows more job losses than economists predicted.  

This is the last unemployment report scheduled to be published before the presidential election at a time when many voters say the economy is their major concern.

The figures on job losses are based on a government survey of tens of thousands of households.  The jobless rate comes from a separate survey of hundreds of thousands of businesses.   

Some information for this report was provided by AP.