It’s Thursday! Of course it’s that time again! Time for your weekly jobless claims report.

Applications for jobless benefits declined by 7,000, for the week ending March 2, bringing the total to 340,000, down from last week’s revised figure of 347,000, the Labor Department announced on Thursday.

The four-week moving average, a “less volatile” figure, also fell by 7,000, bringing the total to 348,750, down from last week’s revised average of 355,750. This is the lowest it has been since since March 2008, just a few months into the financial crisis.

“The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.4 percent for the week ending February 23, unchanged from the prior week’s unrevised rate,” the report reads.

“The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending February 23 was 3,094,000, an increase of 3,000 from the preceding week’s revised level of 3,091,000. The 4-week moving average was 3,121,750, a decrease of 37,500 from the preceding week’s revised average of 3,159,250,” the report adds.

The states with the largest increases in initial claims for the week ending February 23 were Massachusetts (+4,024), North Carolina (+1,995), Illinois (+1,782), Rhode Island (+988), and Connecticut (+733).

Meanwhile, California (-40,352), New York (-2,070), Texas (-1,334), Florida (-878), and Pennsylvania (-781) posted the biggest decreases in initial claims.

Continuing claims (i.e. those already receiving benefits) rose by 3,000 to a seasonally adjusted 3.09 million in the week ended Feb. 23, according to the Labor Department.

Also, based on more complete data gathered at the state level, initial claims from two weeks ago have been revised to 3,000, up from an original read of 344,000.

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Front page photo courtesy Getty Images.

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