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Job growth in the U.S. slowed by much more than expected in the month of September, according to a closely watched report released by the Labor Department on Friday.

The Labor Department said non-farm payroll employment rose by 661,000 jobs in September after spiking by an upwardly revised 1.489 million jobs in August.

Economists had expected employment to increase by 850,000 jobs compared to the jump of 1.371 million jobs originally reported for the previous month.

Despite the weaker than expected job growth, the report said the unemployment rate slid to 7.9 percent in September from 8.4 percent in August. The unemployment rate was expected to dip to 8.2 percent.


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