An unexpected increase in US jobless claims last week

Thursday, February 18, 2021 - 15:08
Point Trader Group
An unexpected increase in US jobless claims last week

The number of Americans filing for new unemployment benefits rose unexpectedly last week, but the labor market is recovering steadily, as additional financial stimulus and a decline in Covid-19 injuries allow more services to reopen.

The US Labor Department said Thursday that the total government unemployment benefits submitted for the first time reached a modified level in light of seasonal factors at 861,000 applications for the week ending February 13, compared to 848,000 in the previous week. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast 765,000 applications in the most recent week.

Orders have fallen off the record-breaking 6.867 million peak last March, when the pandemic hit the United States. Although it remains stuck above the peak of 665,000 recorded during the Great Recession between 2007 and 2009, there is reason for cautious optimism that the labor market recovery will gain momentum during the spring.

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