Applications for jobless benefits fell by 23,000 for the week ending November 24, bringing the total to 393,000, down from last week’s revised figure of 416,000, the Labor Department announced on Thursday.
The four-week moving average, a “less volatile” figure, increased by 7,500, bringing the total to 405,250, up from last week’s revised average of 397,750, its highest point since October 2011.
“The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.6 percent for the week ending November 17, unchanged from the prior week’s unrevised rate,” the agency’s weekly report reads.
“The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending November 10 was 3,337,000, a decrease of 30,000 from the preceding week’s revised level of 3,367,000. The 4-week moving average was 3,285,000, an increase of 19,500 from the preceding week’s revised average of 3,265,500,” the report adds.
The states with the largest increases in initial claims for the week ending November 17 were Florida (+1,534), Michigan (+1,427), Massachusetts (+1,189), Kentucky (+945), and Minnesota (+872).
Meanwhile, New York (-30,603), California (-26,337), and Pennsylvania (-11,451) saw the biggest decreases in initial claims.
Wait, New York saw a sizable decrease in claims while Michigan and Kentucky saw increases?
Remember when everyone was saying that “Superstorm Sandy” was responsible for the increase in initial claims? Does this excuse apply to Michigan and Kentucky?
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Front page photo courtesy Getty Images. This story has been updated.