The US economy lost jobs last month for the first time since April as rising coronavirus cases took a toll.
Employers shed 140,000 positions, leaving the jobless rate unchanged at 6.7%.
Restaurants and bars led the payroll declines, as new restrictions in some places and cold weather sapped enthusiasm for outdoor dining.
The figures were the latest sign that the fragile economic recovery from the pandemic remains at risk.
The US has regained about half of the more than 20 million positions lost at the height of the lockdowns this spring.