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Washington (AFP) – The U.S. jobless rate fell sharply to 7 percent in November on the creation of a solid 203,000 jobs, the Labor Department announced on Friday.

The sharp drop in the rate, from 7.3 percent in October, was unexpected and raised the odds that the Federal Reserve could soon begin moving away from its huge stimulus plan.

The number of jobs created was also better than expected, 3,000 more than October’s adjusted figure and up from 175,000 in September.

The number of unemployed Americans fell by 365,000 to 10.9 million, while the number of those who left the work force also fell, adding to the overall signs of strength.

Another previous sign of weakness, the number of people working part-time, also declined, by 331,000.

AFP Photo/Frederic J. Brown

Amy Coney Barrett

Photo from Fox 45 Baltimore/ Facebook

Donald Trump will select U.S. Appeals Court Judge Amy Coney Barrett as his Supreme Court pick Saturday, multiple news outlets confirmed with White House officials on Friday — and the outlook couldn't be more bleak for reproductive rights, LGBTQ rights, immigration, and the future of health care in the United States.

According to the New York Times, Trump "will try to force Senate confirmation before Election Day."

"The president met with Judge Barrett at the White House this week and came away impressed with a jurist that leading conservatives told him would be a female Antonin Scalia," the Times reported.

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