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NJ unemployment rate, labor force size, decline



TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — New Jersey’s unemployment rate has dropped a bit early this fall as more people have left the labor force.

Preliminary October data show the number of people with jobs dropped slightly as the unemployment rate was 8.4 percent.

Thursday’s data from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics are the first state-level jobs data released in two months because the federal government shutdown in October caused a reporting delay.

The unemployment rate for September was also estimated at 8.4 percent, down from 8.5 percent in August.

The national unemployment rate for August was 7.3 percent.

The number of residents employed or seeking work has been declining for a year.