Nightly News   |  October 22, 2013

Jobs report falls below expectations

Although the unemployment rate fell to 7.2 percent, there is widespread caution that the full effects of the government shutdown have yet to be seen. NBC’s Ron Mott reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> now we turn to the day's other news, and that means the economy, the september numbers we should have had three weeks ago about american jobs have finally now been released. they were delayed by the government shutdown , and they're fairly weak. 148,000 jobs created in september. though the unemployment rate teched down to 7.2%, the lowest in five years. there is widespread worry out there that the numbers should be better. worried about the sluggish pace of the recovery. the number of people discouraged and all but permanently unemployed. and the unknowns about the full impact of this government shutdown . our report tonight from nbc's ron mott in chicago .

>> do you have a resume?

>> i do.

>> reporter: kia lost her government job seven months ago.

>> i'm looking for a wonderful, great position anywhere.

>> and is out pounding the pavement again at an employment fair in washington, d.c. her frustration growing every step of the way.

>> i was making $85,000 a year. and now i'm at zero. and it's just -- it's heartbreaking. it's heartbreaking.

>> reporter: a symbol of discouraging news today. how would you grade this report?

>> i think it's more of a five than an eight or nine which is what we should be seeing.

>> reporter: economist diane swan says this is charting new troubling territory. take a look at the plunge. each time the economy bounced back. but more than five years after the great recession began, we still haven't gotten back where we started.

>> we still would like to see those 4 or 500,000, 800,000 jobs that we saw job gains in the 1980s and you don't get that kind of job gains when coming out of a financial crisis .

>> reporter: this report doesn't even factor in damage done by the government shutdown . paulette force is back at the job at the epa, uncertain about her finances and holiday spending.

>> i'm not sure i should spend that money, you know, to travel, you know, because my paycheck may be short or delayed again.

>> reporter: experts worry, the shutdown will slow down an already sluggish recovery, blaming politicians for weakening consumer confidence .

>> they're losing and then some from the uncertainty they create.

>> having to do more with less.

>> yes, absolutely. but we're trying to stay open longer. you know? just to give the public an opportunity, so we increased our hours.

>> reporter: at the abbey brown on chicago 's west side , owner, deborah cramer, and her small staff continue making designer soaps. business up and down, week to week.

>> we're seeing the crunch where we're talking to the people directly. and people will say, well, you know, i didn't get my paycheck. or i'm not able to this week. you know?

>> reporter: another lackluster jobs report, concern the next one could be even worse . ron mott, nbc news, chicago .

>> again, while the numbers were considered disappointing, they did not drag the market down today. in fact, the dow was up more than 75 points. nasdaq up, as well. s&p rose to a new record