Business, Finance & Economics

US Jobs Report: Unemployment rate falls to 7.8%, economy adds 114,000 jobs


Unemployed workers attend a job fair at the Washington Convention Center Aug. 23, 2012, in Washington, DC. The US added a disappointing 96,000 nonfarm jobs in August, and the unemployment rate fell to 8.1 percent from July's 8.3 percent.


Chip Somodevilla

The latest US jobs report says 114,000 payroll jobs were added in September, slightly more than expected, while the unemployment rate dropped to 7.8 percent.

The much-anticipated jobs report, released today by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, said employment had increased in health care, transportation and warehousing, "but changed little in most other major industries."

The report comes at an important moment in the US presidential election race, in which the jobs market is a key issue.

This is the first time the unemployment rate has been below 8 percent since President Barack Obama took office in January 2009. The newly released figures show it dropped to 7.8 percent from 8.1 percent in August.

"The latest unemployment figures could give the White House a lift in a tight re-election," MarketWatch said.

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The Wall Street Journal noted that the jobs report is the first since the Federal Reserve's decision to start a stimulus program that includes buying $40 billion a month of mortgage-backed securities until the US job market improves. 

The report also said that total employment rose by 873,000 in September, after months of little change, to 133.5 million.

The number of unemployed people, at 12.1 million, decreased by 456,000.

Private sector companies in the United States added 162,000 jobs in September, according to a report released Wednesday by the payroll processor ADP.

More from GlobalPost: US companies added 162,000 jobs in September