Updated from 8:44 a.m. EDTThe U.S. economy lost 663,000 jobs in March, and the unemployment rate rose to 8.5%, essentially meeting the bleak estimates of Wall Street economists. The Labor Department said Friday that the nation's jobless rate increased from 8.1% in February, while the number of nonfarm payroll jobs lost has now surpassed 5 million since the beginning of the recession in December 2007. Roughly 3.3 million jobs have vanished in the last five months alone.
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