U.S. unemployment rate rises to 8.9%
Barbara Mathieson | May 9, 2009 at 04:38 amby
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By Mike Dorning
May 9, 2009 Reporting from Washington -- The pace of job losses slowed considerably during the month of April, adding to hopes that the nation's steep economic downturn may be nearing a bottom.
Employers cut 539,000 jobs last month, the fewest in six months and significantly fewer than the 699,000 jobs that had been lost the previous month, the U.S. Labor Department reported Friday.
Still, the job market for Americans is difficult and getting worse. The nation's unemployment rate climbed to 8.9% in April, the highest since 1983 and up from 8.5% the previous month.
"We pulled the cord and the parachute was packed. We're still falling, but we're not in free fall anymore," said Diane Swonk, chief economist for Chicago-based Mesirow Financial.
I was encouraged by the drop in new layoffs in April until I read this article in the Los Angeles Times.
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