US Unemployment Claims Rise Slightly But Trend Still Positive

The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose marginally last week, but the underlying trend suggested the labor market continued to steadily improve.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits ticked up 1,000 to a seasonally adjusted 326,000, the Labor Department said on Thursday. Claims for the prior week were revised to show 1,000 fewer applications received than previously reported.

Economists polled by Reuters had expected first-time applications for jobless benefits to hold steady at 326,000 in the week ended January 18.

The four-week moving average for new claims, considered a better measure of underlying labor market conditions, fell 3,750 to 331,500.

via Reuters

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza