The unemployment rate declined in September in most "swing" or battleground states for the U.S. presidential election, data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics showed Friday.

In all, the unemployment rate fell in 41 states and in the District of Colombia in September; the jobless rate rose in six states and was unchanged in three states.

In the battleground states, the unemployment rate declined in Ohio, Florida, Wisconsin, Colorado, Iowa, Nevada, and North Carolina. The unemployment rate was unchanged in New Hampshire and Virginia. All are battleground states - or states that both President Barack Obama or Republican Party presidential nominee Mitt Romney - has a chance to win.

The U.S. unemployment rate declined to 7.8 percent in September - its lowest level since President Obama took office in January 2009.

The presidential election is November 6, less than three weeks away.