The jobless rate jumped to 6.1 percent in August, from 5.7 percent in July. And, employers cut payrolls for the eighth month in a row. Job losses in June and July turned out to be much deeper. The economy lost a whopping 100,000 jobs in June and another 60,000 in July, according to revised figures. Previously, the government reported job losses at 51,000 in each of those months.
So far this year, job losses totaled 605,000.
The latest snapshot was worse than economists were forecasting. They were predicting payrolls would drop by around 75,000 in August and the jobless rate to tick up a notch, to 5.8 percent. The grim news comes as the race for the White House kicks into high gear. The economy's troubles are Americans' top worry.
On the flip side, worker wages gained about 0.4 percent in August over July. And second-quarter growth (latest available) was 3.3 percent (up from an original 1.9 percent estimate).
Seasonal adjusted uemployment rates by month for past 10 years here.
Average annual unemployment rates going back to 1948 (fascinating!) here.