October 4th, 2014 11:38 AM by Todd Perdew
Unemployment falls below 6% for first time since 2008 as U.S. adds 248,000 jobs. Unemployment also fell to 5.9% from 6.1% — the last time the rate was below 6% was in July 2008 — mainly because more people found work. Yet more Americans also stopped looking for jobs, reducing the percentage of people in the labor force to a 36-year low. The participation rate in September fell a tenth to 62.7%, marking the lowest level since February 1978.
The housing data released last week continued to be encouraging. August New Home Sales jumped 18% from July to the highest level since May 2008. Existing Home Sales, which include roughly 90% of the market, did decline slightly in August, but this followed four straight months of gains. With mortgage rates remaining relatively low, home sales are near the highest levels of the year.