Jobless rate hits 9.8% in Sept.

WASHINGTON (AP) - October 2, 2009

The Labor Department says the nation's economy lost a net total of 263,000 jobs last month, up from a downwardly revised total of 201,000 in August.

That's above Wall Street economists' expectations of 180,000 job losses, according to a survey by Thomson Reuters. The unemployment rate rose from 9.7 percent in August, matching expectations.

If laid-off workers who have settled for part-time work or have given up looking for new jobs are included, the unemployment rate rose to 17 percent, the highest on records dating from 1994.

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