National jobless rate rises to 9.8% as job growth slows - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

National jobless rate rises to 9.8% as job growth slows

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The nation's unemployment rate climbed to 9.8% in November, a seven-month high, as hiring slowed.

Employers added only 39,000 jobs last month, a sharp decline from the 172,000 created in October. The weakness was widespread. Retailers, factories, construction companies, financial firms and the government all cut jobs last month.

Private companies -- the backbone of the economy -- created 50,000 jobs. That was down significantly from the 160,000 private-sector jobs created in October and was the smallest gain since January.

With hiring so weak, the unemployment rate rose from 9.6% to 9.8%. The jobless rate has now topped 9% for 19 straight months, the longest stretch on record.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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