By Lucia Mutikani
WASHINGTON, Oct 2 (Reuters) – U.S. job growth likely slowed further in September as the recovery from the COVID-19 slump shifts into lower gear amid diminishing government money and a relentless pandemic, leaving many at the risk of being permanently unemployed.
The Labor Department’s closely watched employment report on Friday will be the last before the fiercely contested Nov. 3 presidential election for which the economic blow from the pandemic has been a top issue. Republican President Donald Trump is likely to see the fifth straight month of job gains as a sign of progress for an economy that plunged into recession in February.
But September’s anticipated employment gains would be the smallest since the jobs recovery started in May and would still leave the labor market a long way from recouping the 22.2 million jobs lost in March and April. Former Vice President Joe Biden,