The number of Americans filing new jobless claims fell last week as layoffs dropped to their lowest level in more than 24 years in August, indicating that the labor market is advancing at a rapid pace even as cases of COVID-19 are in increase.
The United States Department of Labor said Thursday that the prime Government unemployment claims fell 14,000 to seasonally adjusted 340,000 for the week ending August 28. This is the lowest level since mid-March 2020, when non-essential businesses were closed to slow the first wave of the coronavirus.
Economists interviewed by Reuters had expected 345,000 orders in the past week.
Claims have dropped from a peak record of 6.149 million in early April, but remain above the 200,000-250,000 range which is considered consistent with a strong labor market.
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