In October, the US added 171, 000 new jobs. This is higher than expected to boost Obama four days prior the election. Under Obama, it was already the 25th consecutive month of jobs growth. It was expected by the economist by Dow Jones Newswires that the US will create 125,000 new jobs in October following a gain of 114,000 in September.
The figure last month helped US drive unemployment rate below the politically important rate of 8% for the first time since Obama took office in January 2009. The unemployment rate rose slightly from 7.8% to 7.9%. As what Mitt Romney said: “Today’s increase in the unemployment rate is a sad reminder that the economy is at a virtual standstill.” He added, “The jobless rate is higher than it was when president Obama took office, and there are still 23m Americans struggling for work. On Tuesday, America will make a choice between stagnation and prosperity.”
Obama brushed over the job figures, slipping in just a sentence to his normal stump speech during the time of his speech at a rally in Hilliard, Ohio.”Today our businesses have created nearly 5.5 million new jobs. And this morning we learned that companies hired more workers in October than at any time in the last eight months. The American auto industry is back on top. Home values and housing construction is on the rise. We are less dependent on foreign oil than any time in the last 20 years. He added, “We have made real progress but we are here today because we know we have got more work to do. As long as there is a single American who wants a job and can’t find one, as long as there are families working harder but falling behind, as long as there is a child anywhere in this country languishing in poverty and barred from opportunity, our fight goes on. We have got more work to do”, quoted as part of his speech.
On the other hand, a great importance to the monthly job figures has been attached to the campaign of Mitt Romney. One of Romney’s senior strategist set out the basics of their campaign strategy, some of which turned out as planned, such as a strong debate performance during the Republican national convention in Tampa, Florida, two months ago. Crucial to the strategy was the unemployment figures for August, released at the end of the Democratic national convention.
That figure 96,000 was weak and it gave Romney a major boost. The figure has now been revised up to 192,000. The strategy in Romney’s campaign been further weakened than better than expected jobs figures and an unemployment rate below the symbolically important 8% mark. More importantly, the superstorm Sandy has moved the economy off the top of the news agenda in the last few days before the election.