UPDATE: U.S. economy adds 146K jobs, jobless rate falls to 7.7% - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

UPDATE: U.S. economy adds 146K jobs, jobless rate falls to 7.7%

Posted:

WASHINGTON (WKOW) -- The U.S. economy adds 146,000 jobs in November and the unemployment rate fell to 7.7 percent, the lowest since December 2008.

The government says Superstorm Sandy had only a minimal effect on the figures. The Labor Department report offered a mixed picture for the economy.

The report says hiring remained steady during Superstorm Sandy and in the face of the looming fiscal cliff.

The government says employers added 49,000 fewer jobs in October and September than initially estimated.

Still, there were signs that the storm disrupted economic activity. Construction employment dropped 20,000 and weather prevented 369,000 people from getting to work. They were still counted as employed.

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WASHINGTON (WKOW) -- The highly anticipated November job report will be released on Friday at 7:30 a.m. and experts say it's likely to show a weak month of job growth.

Economists blame everything from Superstorm Sandy to worries over the fiscal cliff for what's expected to be poor job growth.

Economists predict the government's monthly jobs report will show that employers added fewer than 100,000 workers in November. This number would be far below the 171,000 jobs created in October.

When Superstorm Sandy hit the east coast it stalled hiring and forced many workers into temporary unemployment. This happened in the most densely populated part of the country. Experts say about 86,000 jobs were cut from the market because of Sandy.

According to ABC News, economists estimate that at least 200,000 fewer jobs have been created this year because of uncertainty about the fiscal cliff.

Aides to President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner met Thursday afternoon to discuss the fiscal cliff, but the meeting ended with no discernible signs of progress.

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