U.S. jobless claims drop 12,000 to 409,000
U.S. jobless claims drop 12,000 to 409,000 (by Jeffry Bartash)
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - New applications for unemployment compensation fell by 12,000 last week to 409,000, the Labor Department said Thursday. Initial claims from two weeks ago were revised up to 421,000 from an original reading of 417,000. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had expected new requests for jobless benefits to drop to 405,000 in the week of Aug. 27 on a seasonally adjusted basis. The average of new claims over the past four weeks, meanwhile, rose by 1,750 to 410,250. The monthly average is seen as a more accurate gauge of labor trends because it smoothes out volatility in the week-to-week data. About 7.34 million people received some kind of state or federal benefit in the week of Aug. 13, up 45,531 from the prior week. The number of Americans who continue to receive regular state unemployment checks decreased by 18,000 to 3.74 million in the week ended Aug 20.