- Special Sections
- Public Notices
WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of newly laid-off workers seeking unemployment benefits fell more than expected last week to the lowest total in a month, a sign the job market may be improving.
The Labor Department said that first-time claims for unemployment insurance dropped by 43,000 to a seasonally adjusted 440,000. Wall Street economists expected a smaller decline of 15,000, according to a survey by Thomson Reuters.
The jobless claims report was the first of the year that wasn't affected by a holiday backlog. The easing of the backlog had elevated the numbers for the previous three weeks. The latest figures likely provide a clearer picture of the job market.
And they raise some hopes for the economic rebound.
"The recovery is slowly taking root," Diane Swonk, chief economist at Mesirow Financial, wrote in a research note.
Still, she added, "Any gains we see are likely to remain muted given the depth of the losses we endured, especially when it comes to jobs."
And the jobs outlook is about to get muddy again.
The unemployment claims numbers for this week that will be reported next week will likely be affected by the closing of businesses and government offices due to the snowstorms in the Mid-Atlantic region.
If you currently subscribe or have subscribed in the past to the Los Alamos Monitor, then simply find your account number on your mailing label and enter it below.
Click the question mark below to see where your account ID appears on your mailing label.
If you are new to the award winning Los Alamos Monitor and wish to get a subscription or simply gain access to our online content then please enter your ZIP code below and continue to setup your account.