"I don't believe it."
"This is anomalous."
"There's going to be an upward revision."
That's how three top economists reacted on CNBC to the much-lower-than-expected August jobs report, shortly after it was released Friday.
The U.S. economy added only 142,000 nonfarm payrolls last month, the Labor Department said, while the unemployment rate fell slightly to 6.1 percent.
"I don't believe this data. It's not consistent with anything," Moody's Analytics Chief Economist Mark Zandi said in a "Squawk Box" interview.
He puts together the monthly ADP private sector jobs report, which on Thursday said jobs grew in August by 204,000.
"Here's an intrepid forecast next month," Zandi offered. "These will be revised higher."
Alan Krueger, former chairman of President Barack Obama's White House Council of Economic Advisers, said: "This is anomalous."
"But the dip in the unemployment rate, the 6.1 percent, is positive," he added.
Despite the payroll weakness, Krueger said he's thinks "the underlying trend is still 200,000 jobs of month."
Former Mitt Romney economic adviser Kevin Hassett put it this way: "I think you can put it in the bank … there's going to be an upward revision in the 40,000 to 50,000 range."
—By CNBC's Matthew J. Belvedere