At 7.9%, US unemployment rate spells trouble for Trump ahead of polls

The US unemployment rate fell to 7.9% in September, from 8.4% in August, a big drop that in normal times would be welcome news for a presidential incumbent seeking reelection in just over a month.

These are not normal times. As the best-known summary statistic of the labor market, the US unemployment rate is a "a psychologically important number" for voters, said Michael Brown, principal US economist at Visa. But President Donald Trump's announcement on Friday that he had tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

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