July 12th, 2024

US applications for jobless benefits fall again as labor market continues to thrive

By Matt Ott, The Associated Press on December 14, 2023.

A hiring sign is displayed outside of a retail store in Schaumburg, Ill., Tuesday, Dec.12, 2023. On Thursday, the Labor Department reports on the number of people who applied for unemployment benefits last week. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

The number of Americans filing for jobless benefits fell last week as the labor market continues to thrive despite high interest rates and elevated costs.

Applications for unemployment benefits fell by 19,000 to 202,000 for the week ending Dec. 9, the Labor Department reported Thursday. Analysts were expecting around 224,000.

About 1.88 million people were collecting unemployment benefits the week that ended Dec. 2, 20,000 more than the previous week.

Jobless claim applications are seen as representative of the number of layoffs in a given week.

The four-week moving average of jobless claim applications – which flattens out some of weekly volatility – fell by 7,750 to 213,250.

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