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U.S. Economy: Employment Stagnates, Jobless Rate at 9.1%

Employment in the U.S. unexpectedly stagnated in August, increasing pressure on Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke and President Barack Obama to spur an economy that’s barely growing two years into the recovery.

Payrolls were unchanged, the weakest reading since September 2010, the Labor Department said today in Washington. The median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey called for a gain of 68,000. The figures included a 48,000 drop in the information industry, mostly reflecting a strike at Verizon Communications Inc. The jobless rate held at 9.1 percent.