The U.S. economy added 1.4 million jobs in August, sending the unemployment rate below 10 percent for the first time since the pandemic began, a glimmer of good news as the pandemic continues its march across the country.

The unemployment rate fell to 8.4 percent.

The job gains were driven by hiring in government, particularly temporary Census workers, who accounted for 238,000 new jobs — more than 1 in 6 of the new jobs added. Other sectors that have been hard hit by the pandemic showed signs of growth, including retail which added 249,000 positions; leisure and hospitality, which added 174,000 jobs, primarily in restaurants, bars and other food establishments; and education and health services, which gained 147,000 jobs.

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