The unemployment rate dropped to 7.8% in October, the lowest rate since President Obama started in office. The economy added 114,000 jobs and numbers of job added in August was revised to 142,000 from 96,000. This is the 24th month of consecutive job growth and the lowest unemployment rate in 44 months.
The major industries that added jobs include:
- Health care - 44,000
- Transportation and warehousing - 17,000
- Finance - 13,000
Job search engine Simply Hired's New Job Trends Outlook Report shows a 5.6 % in job postings for September with an increase in job opening in 48 out of 50 major metro areas. Hartford & New Haven (8.8%) and New York (8.3%) had the largest gains in September.
Despite the job market growth, unemployment is still a major concern, with the number of long-term unemployed workers (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) remaining at 4.8 million and comprising 40.1% of the unemployed.
Jobless workers who are currently collecting unemployment will see all federal extended benefit programs come to an end in December unless an extension is passed by Congress. For 2013, the only benefits in place are a maximum of 26 weeks of state unemployment benefits.
Christine Owens, executive director of the National Employment Law Project says, "Major indicators improved, but we cannot afford to ignore the long-term unemployed--the 40 percent of the unemployed who've been out of work six months or longer. They're about to reach the edge of a real and enormous financial cliff at the end of December, when the federal extended unemployment program is slated to expire. Failure of Congress to renew the program will immediately pull the rug out from under two million unemployed Americans, an unconscionable result we cannot and should not tolerate. Unless Congress acts before the year ends to reauthorize the unemployment program, those still suffering the most in this economy will not have the support they need to get back on their feet and get back to work. It's good economics and the right thing to do."