Thursday’s stellar stock market gains were followed by a lackluster rise Friday, largely due to a disappointing jobs report from the federal government.
The Labor Dept.’s report today showing that the unemployment rate nudged down .2 percentage points won’t do much to lift President Obama’s standing in the election race. The report was weak throughout. Hourly pay fell; manufacturers cut the most jobs in two years, and the number of people in the work force dropped to its lowest level in 31 years.
A private survey suggests that the government is about to report improved employment data for the month of August.