SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - The highly anticipated jobs report was released Friday.
The unemployment rate dropped to 7.8 percent, the lowest rate in nearly 4 years and you can bet both Presidential candidates are using the numbers to get closer to the White House.
It couldn't have been timed better.
Just 2 days after President Obama was criticized for a poor showing at the first Presidential debate, unemployment numbers Friday indicate more people are back to work.
"I think any step in the right direction is good news," said Mona Dube, Enfield.
The Labor Department reported the unemployment rate dropped to 7.8 percent, the lowest in nearly 4 years.
Sounds like great news, but given the timing, people are skeptical. Like Jim Angelo who has been out of work for 3 years.
"I don't know if I believe that I think it might just be an election ploy at this point," said Jim Angelo of Windsor Locks.
The report also found more jobs were added in July and August then first reported, news President Obama will surely use on the campaign trail.
History has shown that high unemployment can cost a candidate the race for the White House. Gerald Ford was ousted in 1976 when unemployment was 7.8% as well and Jimmy Carter lost to Ronald Reagan in 1980 when unemployment was 7.5%.
AIC professor John Rogers says it takes about 5-7 years to get out of an economic crisis, so while the report looks good on the surface, the road to recovery will continue for awhile.
"The overall employment went up a little over 100,000 which sounds good but really we need 250-300,000 jobs to absorb all of the remaining unemployment and the new people coming into the workforce so we still have a long way to go," Rogers said.
Republican Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney responded to the report today by arguing the rate is low because some people have stopped looking for work.
Only those actively looking for jobs are counted.