2020-10-07 —

... the total [of 661,000] was a fairly wide miss from Wall Street's expectation of 800,000. The unemployment rate fell more than expected to 7.9%, but that was mostly due to a sharp decline in labor force participation.

Taken together, the report is a potential early flare from the business community that a rebound during which 11 million jobs were refilled in four months could be petering out.

"This report is an illusion of progress at a time when we needed accelerating gains in the labor market. The number of jobs added this month is just not enough," said Nick Bunker, economic research director at job placement site Indeed. "This report is massively concerning. We are not where we need to be, nor are we moving fast enough in the right direction as we head into fall."


Companies increasingly are indicating that they may not survive without persistent growth and additional aid. About one-third of small- and mid-size businesses indicated to PNC that they would close in a year or less absent a change in conditions, said Gus Faucher, the bank's chief economist.

"The low-hanging fruit has been picked, and the job market recovery will slow further going forward," Faucher added in a note. "A surge in coronavirus cases in late 2020 could lead to further business closures. An inability to pass additional fiscal stimulus -- including aid to households, small and mid-size businesses, and state and local governments -- is another downside risk."

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