Fewer Americans filed for unemployment aid last week


1 photo

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Fewer Americans applied for unemployment claims last week, another sign of strength in the job market.

THE NUMBERS: Weekly applications for unemployment benefits fell 11,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 271,000, the Labor Department said Thursday. The less volatile 4-week average was essentially unchanged at 271,000.

THE TAKEAWAY: The numbers show that most American workers are enjoying job security. The number of weekly claims for unemployment benefits amounts to a proxy for layoffs. And another Labor report shows that layoffs have dropped to well below where they were before the Great Recession of 2007-2009.

KEY DRIVERS: The U.S. job market is solid. Employers have been adding a healthy 210,000 jobs a month so far this year. And unemployment last month stayed at a seven-year low 5 percent.

BIG PICTURE: Unemployment claims have remained near historic lows for the past nine months. Applications below 300,000 a week usually correspond with net monthly job gains of more than 200,000. The American economy is growing at a steady but unspectacular pace of about 2 percent a year — enough to support consistent hiring. On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve decided the economy was healthy enough to withstand the first interest rate increase in years. Fed policymakers raised the short-term rate they control from near zero, where it had been since December 2008.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Photos

Paul Wiseman

    SIGN UP FOR THE KSL.COM NEWSLETTER

    Catch up on the top news and features from KSL.com, sent weekly.
    By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to KSL.com's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

    KSL Weather Forecast