Applications for jobless benefits fell by 26,000 for the week ending March 1, bringing the total to 323,000, down from last week’s revised figure of 349,000, the Labor Department announced Thursday.
This is an official three-month low, the Labor Department said.
The four-week moving average, a “less volatile” figure, decreased by 2,000 to 336,500, down from last week’s revised figure of 338,500.
“The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.2 percent for the week ending February 22, unchanged from the prior week's revised rate,” the report reads.
“The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending February 22 was 2,907,000, a decrease of 8,000 from the preceding week's revised level of 2,915,000. The 4-week moving average was 2,927,750, a decrease of 14,750 from the preceding week's revised average of 2,942,500,” it adds.
The states with the largest increases in initial claims for the week ending February 22 were Georgia (+7,383), Massachusetts (+3,502), South Carolina (+3,320), Connecticut (+1,376), and Alabama (+1,259).
Meanwhile, California (-4,973), Missouri (-3,642), New York (-3,572), Michigan (-2,322), and Oregon (-1,810) posted the biggest decreases in initial claims.
Nearly 3.4 million Americans received unemployment benefits as of Feb. 15, which is down from 3.49 million the previous week, the Associated Press reported.
Markets are poised to open mixed this morning:
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