Employers added 80,000 jobs. After some recent positive economic news, analysts had expected a gain of between 90,000 and 100,000.
The unemployment rate ticked down to 9 percent from 9.1 percent. It has stayed between 9 and 9.2 percent since April. Nearly 14 million people are officially unemployed.
The job gains offer further evidence that the economy is not currently at risk of slipping back into a recession, as some had feared over the summer. But they also aren't nearly enough to begin significantly cutting into the unemployment rate, and they suggest that the jobs situation remains stuck in a grim stasis--not getting worse, but not getting much better either.