U.S. Weekly Jobless Claims Rebound From Four-Decade Low

First-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits rebounded in the week ended July 25th, according to a report released by the Labor Department on Thursday, with claims bouncing off the more than forty-year low set in the previous week.

The report said initial jobless claims climbed to 267,000, an increase of 12,000 from the previous week’s unrevised level of 255,000. Economists had expected claims to rise to about 272,000.

The previous week’s unrevised figure represented the lowest number of initial jobless claims since November of 1973.

Despite the weekly rebound, the Labor Department said the less volatile four-week moving average fell to 274,750, a decrease of 3,750 from the previous week’s unrevised average of 278,500.

Continuing claims, a reading on the number of people receiving ongoing unemployment assistance, still rose by 46,000 to 2.262 million in the week ended July 18th.

Meanwhile, the four-week moving average of continuing claims edged down to 2,255,250, a decrease of 750 from the previous week’s revised average of 2,256,000.

The Labor Department is scheduled to release a separate report next Friday on the employment situation in the whole month of July.

The report is likely to attract significant attention in light of the Federal Reserve’s assessment that it would be appropriate to raise interest rates “when it has seen some further improvement in the labor market.”

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