Hurricanes hurt U.S. employment

But unemployment rate dipped in September

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The U.S. economy lost 33,000 jobs in September as parts of the nation were devastated by hurricanes, according to the latest monthly employment report from the U.S. Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Hurricane Harvey hit Texas in late August and Hurricane Irma made landfall in Florida on Sept. 10.

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“Our analysis suggests that the net effect of these hurricanes was to reduce the estimate of total nonfarm payroll employment for September,” the report states.

“In September, a sharp employment decline in food services and drinking places and below-trend growth in some other industries likely reflected the impact of Hurricanes Irma and Harvey,” said William Wiatrowski, acting commissioner of the BLS. “The storms caused large-scale evacuations and severe damage to many homes and businesses.”

The data does not include Puerto Rico or the U.S. Virgin Islands, so the economic impact of Hurricane Maria on those U.S. territories in not reflected in the report.

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The U.S. unemployment rate in September was 4.2 percent, down from 4.4 percent in August.

Read more economic data reports at the BizTracker page.

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