Applications for US jobless aid rise but remain at low level

Apr 22, 2017, 01:35
Applications for US jobless aid rise but remain at low level

Filings for first-time claims rose by 10,000 to 244,000, according to the government's latest report (pdf.).

Initial jobless claims in the US for the week ended 15 April increased by 10,000 to 244,000, consistent with consensus expectations of claims rising modestly to 240,000.

Meanwhile, continuing claims for unemployment insurance, the overall number of people receiving jobless benefits, fell to 1.979 million, a drop of 49,000 from the prior week and the lowest level for this measure since April 2000.

New applications for United States jobless benefits rose slightly more than expected last week, but a drop in the number of Americans on unemployment rolls to a 17-year low suggested the labour market continues to tighten.

The four-week moving average, however, declined to 243,000 from 247,250 previously.

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The four-week moving average of continuing claims also edged down to a almost seventeen-year low of 2,023,500, a decrease of 2,000 from the previous week's unrevised average of 2,025,500.

The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits remains at the lowest level in decades amid a prolonged surge in job creation since 2011.

They have been below the 300,000 benchmark for 111 weeks. 15, the Labor Department said on Thursday.

The claims data covered the survey week for April non-farm payrolls.

Given that the labour market is near full employment with a 4.5 per cent jobless rate and companies are reporting difficulties finding skilled workers, some economists see limited scope for claims to fall further. Data on continuing claims are released with a one-week lag.

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