Unemployment rate drops to 3.7%, lowest in half a century

The unemployment rate dropped to a half-century low in September, the Labor Department reported Friday. However, there was an increase in the number of people working part-time who want full-time work.

The unemployment rate is now at 3.7 percent, the lowest rate since December 1969, when the jobless number was 3.5 percent. That’s despite hiring being slower than expected in September.

Only 134,000 jobs were added, while most economists had been expecting about 180,000 jobs to be added. The slowdown could be due to the effects of Hurricane Florence, which battered and flooded the Carolinas in mid-September. On average, the economy has added about 200,000 jobs per month this year — well above the number needed to keep up with a growing population.

Average earnings grew 2.8 percent from the year-before period, continuing the relatively high wage growth from August.

This is a developing story.

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