The number of Americans applying for first-time jobless benefits increased unexpectedly last week, according to the Labor Department.
Data released Thursday showed 744,000 Americans filed their first jobless claims in the week ended April 3, analysts polled by Refinitiv expected 680,000 filings, the previous week’s total. Get revised up 9,000 to 728,000.
The ongoing claims for the week ended March 27, while slowing to 3.734 million from the previous week̵7;s drop of 3.75 million, economists expect the number of ongoing claims to drop to 3.65 million.
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The unexpected increase in the number of first-time jobless claims came after the March nonfarm payroll report showed signs that the U.S. labor market is recovering. Employers added 918,000 jobs last month as the unemployment rate fell to 6 percent, the lowest level since the coronavirus outbreak.
Economists predict the economy could add more than 1 million jobs each month ahead.