The unemployment rate in the United States dropped to 7.8 percent in September, the lowest level since January 2009, when President Barack Obama took office, according to a report released Friday by the Labor Department.
It was welcome news at The White House after what many think was a disappointing debate performance by the president Wednesday night.
"This morning we found out that the unemployment rate has fallen to its lowest level since I took office," Obama said at a campaign stop in Virginia, one of the battleground states in November’s election. "It’s a reminder that this country has come too far to turn back now."
The unemployment rate fell 0.3 percent in September, as employers added 114,000 new jobs. The government also revised previous numbers to show the economy created 86,000 more jobs in July and August than first estimated.
The health care industry added the most jobs 44,000 and for the third month in a row jobs within the government grew, but manufacturing jobs fell for the second straight month.
The president’s opponent, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney downplayed the jobs report. “This is not what a real recovery looks like," said Romney. "If not for all the people who have simply dropped out of the labor force, the real unemployment rate would be closer to 11 percent."
The report, however, says the decline in the unemployment rate was due to more job seekers finding work, as opposed to giving up and leaving the labor market as was the case in previous reports.
There is one more monthly unemployment report before the Nov. 6 election.