U.S. economy added 661,000 jobs in September

Airline workers protest in Chicago in early September. Photo: Kamil Krzaczynski/AFP via Getty Images

The U.S. economy added 661,000 jobs in September, while the unemployment rate fell to 7.9% from 8.4%, the government said on Friday.

Why it matters: The final jobs report before the election showed a slowdown in hiring — a sign the labor market is in for a longer road to recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

The big picture: Economists warn it will be years before the labor market fully recovers from the walloping earlier this year — if the jobs come back at all.

  • Brian Rose, an economist at UBS, told Axios he expects that 5 million Americans will lose jobs permanently because of the pandemic.

In the meantime, America's labor market picture is darkening.

  • This week was among the worst for the labor market in recent history, with tens of thousands of workers laid off at America’s biggest businesses — including 28,000 workers at Disney theme parks.
  • Airlines are beginning to let go of 32,000 employees, in the absence of additional stimulus from Washington.
  • None of these losses were factored into the jobs report, since the survey period ended in mid-September.

Go deeper: The Trump jobs record

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