White House says jobs data shows US economy continuing to heal

WASHINGTON, Nov 2 (Reuters) - The White House said on Friday that data showing hiring in the United States increased in October was proof the economy is on the mend, and stressed that the nation needs to stay with President Barack Obama's policies to dig out of hole created by the recession.

``Today's employment report provides further evidence that the U.S. economy is continuing to heal from the wounds inflicted by the worst downturn since the Great Depression,'' Alan Krueger, chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, said in a statement.

The last jobs report ahead of the Nov. 6 presidential election beat expectations and showed the economy added 171,000 jobs in October, according to the Labor Department. The unemployment rate inched up to 7.9 percent from 7.8 percent.

(Reporting By Margaret Chadbourn; Editing by Vicki Allen)