Payroll growth was disappointing for a second straight month in September as employers added 156,000 jobs, which raised questions about the health of an economy that was expected to perk up from a prolonged slump in the second half of the year. The unemployment rate rose to 5% from 4.9%, the Labor Department said Friday,

as a rise in employment was more than offset by a sharp increase in the labor force, or the number of Americans working and looking for jobs. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg had forecast 172,000 payroll gains. Businesses added 167,000 jobs, led by professional and business services and health care. Federal, state and local governments cut 11,000. READ MORE