Employers stepped up hiring in October and the jobless rate ticked higher as more workers restarted job hunts, a hopeful sign for a lackluster economy that has been a drag on President Barack Obama's reelection chances.
Employers added 171,000 people to their payrolls last month, the Labor Department said on Friday. The government also said 84,000 more jobs were created in August and September than initially estimated.
The jobless rate edged a tenth of a point higher to 7.9 percent, but that was due to a surge of workers back into the workforce. Only people who have recently looked for a job count as unemployed.
"These are positive numbers," said Fabian Eliasson, vice president of currency sales at Mizuho Corporate Bank in New York.
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