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Last Friday’s employment report surpassed economists’ baseline expectations but still fell woefully short in bolstering confidence that we are on the cusp of a more robust jobs recovery. Private employers expanded payrolls by 137,000 jobs in September, more than offsetting the anticipated drag from cutbacks in government employment. The private tally included approximately 45,000 Verizon workers who had been on strike the prior month. Controlling for their impact on the headline number, private employment increased by a more modest 92,000 jobs.

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