Unemployment drops in most U.S. election swing states

  • The unemployment rate dropped last month in most U.S. election swing states, according to data released by the Labor Department on Friday.

    High unemployment has been a key campaign issue for Democratic President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger Mitt Romney ahead of the November 6 election.

    Overall, regional and state unemployment rates were lower in September.

    Jobless rates decreased in 41 states and the District of Columbia from August, rose in six and remained unchanged in three states.

    Compared to a year ago, unemployment fell in 44 states and the District of Columbia and rose in six.

    In battleground state Florida, the rate dropped to 8.7 percent from 8.8 percent.

    Nevada had the highest unemployment rate among the swing states in the country at 11.8 percent, down from 12.1 percent in August.

    Meanwhile in Colorado, the rate dropped to 8 percent in September from 8.2 percent the previous month.

    Unemployment decreased in eight other swing states, with North Carolina sitting at 9.6 percent and Wisconsin at 7.3 percent. Virginia and New Hampshire remained unchanged.

    Pennsylvania was the only swing state to record a rise in its jobless rate, which increased to 8.2 percent from 8.1.

    The national unemployment rate dropped to 7.8 percent in September, the lowest since Obama took office nearly four years ago.