Photo: AFP/Jeff Kowalsky

September US payroll gains came in at 134,000, far below the 185,000 consensus forecast. But the Bureau of Labor Statistics revised the August employment gain up to 270,000 from the 201,000 originally reported.

The low September number probably reflected the impact of the hurricane that battered America’s east coast during the month. The BLS survey of American households, taken independently of the headcount at business establishments, also show a 420,000 increase in total employment. The household survey is volatile, but that is a very strong number.

Average hourly earnings growth remains modest, just above the headline inflation level. Hour earnings rose 0.3% in September, less than the 0.4% in August.

Bond markets sold off sharply after the number was released. At 8:40 am on Friday, the US 30-year bond was down three-quarters of a point and its yield was up 5 basis points.