By PETER S. GOODMAN
Published: October 2, 2009
After several months in which the American economy flashed tentative signs of improvement, a sobering report on the national job market released on Friday amplified worries that a lengthy period of lean times lay ahead.
The economy shed 263,000 jobs in September, and the unemployment rate edged up to 9.8 percent from 9.7 percent in August, according to the Labor Department’s monthly snapshot of the employment picture.
Though the job market worsened, the pace of deterioration remained markedly slower than during the early months of the year, when roughly 700,000 jobs a month were disappearing. That improvement seems consistent with the widespread belief that the recession has given way to economic growth. Yet the report also buttressed fears that economic expansion would be weak and hesitant, with scarce paychecks and economic anxiety remaining prominent features of American life well into next year.
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