A report released by the Labor Department on Thursday showed a modest increase in first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits in the week ended February 15th.
The Labor Department said initial jobless claims crept up to 210,000, an increase of 4,000 from the previous week’s revised level of 206,000
Economists had expected jobless claims to inch up to 210,000 from the 205,000 originally reported for the previous week.
Meanwhile, the report said the less volatile four-week moving average edged down to 209,000, a decrease of 3,250 from the previous week’s revised average of 212,250.
The Labor Department also said continuing claims, a reading on the number of people receiving ongoing unemployment assistance, rose by 25,000 to 1.726 million in the week ended February 8th.
The four-week moving average of continuing claims still dipped to 1,722,250, a decrease of 5,250 from the previous week’s revised average of 1,727,500.