Jobless Claims Rise Surprising Economists

dpartment of labor logoFirst-time unemployment filings rose last week, according to a report from the U.S. Department of Labor, surprising economists who had expected a decline to 465,000.

Initial jobless claims rose to 480,000 for the week ending Dec. 12, from 473,000 the previous week. It’s the second week in a row that new filings increased. However, the four-week moving average fell for the 15th week straight. The Labor Department says on average, in each of the last four weeks, 467,500 new claims for unemployment benefits were filed.

The Labor Department report says 5.186 million Americans filed a continuing claim during the week. That’s an increase of 5,000 from the previous week, but over the previous four weeks, the weekly average of continuing claims was down.

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