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Tuesday, Nov. 25, 2014

Applications for US unemployment aid slip to 298K

By Christopher S. Rugaber, Associated Press

Published: Thu, Aug. 28 11:53 p.m. MDT

 In this photo taken Tuesday, Aug. 19, 2014, Jessica Pimentel, of Hollywood, Fla., fills out a job application during a job fair in Sunrise. Fla. The Labor Department releases weekly jobless claims on Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014.

In this photo taken Tuesday, Aug. 19, 2014, Jessica Pimentel, of Hollywood, Fla., fills out a job application during a job fair in Sunrise. Fla. The Labor Department releases weekly jobless claims on Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014.

(Alan Diaz, Associated Press)

WASHINGTON — The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits slipped 1,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 298,000, a low level that signals employers are cutting few jobs and hiring is likely to remain strong.

The Labor Department says the four-week average, a less volatile measure, dropped to 299,750. That's just 6,000 higher than four weeks ago, when the average fell to the lowest level in more than eight years.

Applications are a proxy for layoffs. When employers hold onto their workers, it suggests they are more confident in the economy and could step up hiring.

The applications data is the latest sign that the job market is steadily healing. Average job gains since February have been the best in eight years.

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1. george of the jungle
goshen, UT,
Aug. 29, 2014

I kinda think that benefits ran out,if any one did hire is because of the 30 hour week not to give insurance.

2. Tators
Hyrum, UT,
Aug. 29, 2014

When you have a base of nearly 300k, then a difference of only 1k is very minimal. Not enough to get excited about in either direction.
A strong economy would now be showing a more significant drop in unemployment claims. This continues to be the weakest recovery in the history of recession recoveries by every numerical definition.

Too bad we don't have a national leader who understands the business world and how businesses are encouraged, strengthened and therefore allowed to be in significant hiring modes. Don't blame me... I didn't vote for the guy who has absolutely no business experience and for whom we are now just forced to endure.

3. techpubs
Sioux City, IA,
Aug. 29, 2014

Notice there is no mention of the high percentage of workers who have fallen off the list due to unemployment benefits not having extended. Nor is there any mention of the number of workers in their late 50's to early 60's who have given up on looking for work. Those numbers have grown significantly since 2011.

4. Schnee
Salt Lake City, UT,
Aug. 29, 2014

@Tators
"A strong economy would now be showing a more significant drop in unemployment claims."

Actually we've gained over 200k jobs a month for 6 months in a row, the first time that's happened since the 90s so this is what a strong jobs economy looks like for unemployment numbers. 300,000 unemployment claims a week is pretty good. Remember, unemployment claims are also filed when people get fired and replaced, not just when jobs are completely removed.