The good news is that the overall rate ticked down by one-tenth of one percent, but the details aren't especially encouraging:
U.S. employment climbed in October at the slowest pace in four months, illustrating the “frustratingly slow” progress cited by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke this week. The 80,000 increase in payrolls was less than forecast and followed gains in the prior two months that were revised up by 102,000, Labor Department figures showed today in Washington. The unemployment rate fell to a six-month low of 9 percent from 9.1 percent even as the labor force expanded.
The bottom-line unemployment number now sits at exactly nine percent, which in 2009 was the White House's worst case scenario of what might happen in the absence of President Obama's Stimulus package . According to that infamous set of projections, the national unemployment rate should be near 6.5 percent, since the Reid/Pelosi Congress spent well over $800 Billion in borrowed money to boost the economy. The "U-6" figure, which includes the unemployed, under-employed, and discouraged workers remains virtually unchanged at 16.2 percent. When President Obama took office, the unemployment rate was 7.8 percent, and the nation had 2 million more jobs. That's a fairly bleak record, but that could all change now that God has been revealed as a Congressional Democratic Whip, or something.
UPDATE - The Associated Press adds this little morsel: "The report suggests that President Barack Obama will likely face the voters with the highest unemployment rate of any postwar president."
UPDATE II - For the liberals who keep accusing conservatives of "talking down" this economy, the truth is that Obama's economy doesn't need any added negativity. The numbers speak for themselves. Here's a noted Right-wing smear merchant explaining why today's numbers are grim, indeed:
I'll leave you with a fun flashback to 2006. This is what talking down the economy actually looks like. Over to you, Nance:
Pelosi was not to be outdone, however, firing back at the president who she claimed had "the worst jobs record since the Great Depression," in spite of Friday's news that the October jobless rate fell to 4.4 percent, the lowest it has been in more than five years.