Friday, August 22nd19.9°C
21790

Applications for US unemployment benefits rose to 312,000 last week; still close to 7-year low

WASHINGTON - Slightly more Americans sought unemployment benefits last week, but claims for jobless aid continue to be anchored near seven-year lows.

The Labor Department said Thursday that weekly applications for unemployment benefits rose 8,000 to a seasonally adjusted 312,000. The four-week average, a less volatile measure, fell to 310,250. That's the lowest average since June 2007.

Applications are a proxy for layoffs, so the running average suggests employers are letting go of fewer workers. When businesses are confident enough to hold onto staff, they may also step up hiring. That is a positive sign ahead of May's jobs report to be released Friday.

Fewer Americans are also receiving benefits. The number of recipients declined to 2.6 million, the lowest level since October 2007.

The decline in applications since the start of the year has been accompanied by solid job growth, despite an economy that struggled to grow during the winter.

The economy shrank at an annual rate of 1 per cent during the first three months of 2014, primarily because freezing winter weather slowed factory output and consumer spending.

Still, the pace of hiring was steady and has accelerated this spring.

Employers added 288,000 jobs in April, the most in 2 1/2 years, and the unemployment rate dropped to 6.3 per cent from 6.7 per cent. But that steep decline mostly occurred because fewer people than usual began looking for work. The government doesn't count people as unemployed unless they are actively searching.

In the first four months of this year, employers have added an average of 214,000 jobs a month, up from 194,000 last year.

The government issues its May jobs report on Friday. Economists expect 220,000 jobs were created in May, according to a FactSet survey. But payroll processer ADP said Wednesday that private employers pulled back on hiring in May, adding just 179,000 jobs.

Improved hiring should help boost economic growth for the rest of 2014. More jobs mean more people have paychecks to spend.

The Canadian Press


Read more Business News

22671


Recent Trending




Today's Market
S&P TSX15535.55-19.71
S&P CDNX1005.583.38
DJIA17001.22-38.27
Nasdaq4538.551+6.446
S&P 5001988.40-3.97
CDN Dollar0.9137-0.0003
Gold1279.90+6.2001
Oil96.30+1.82
Lumber352.80-2.80
Natural Gas3.842-0.047

 
Okanagan Companies
Pacific Safety0.18-0.005
Knighthawk0.01-0.005
QHR Technologies Inc1.20-0.01
Cantex0.065-0.005
Anavex Life Sciences0.265+0.005
Metalex Ventures0.08+0.005
Russel Metals36.78-0.81
Copper Mountain Mining2.99+0.11
Colorado Resources0.17-0.015
ReliaBrand Inc0.115+0.02
Sunrise Resources Ltd0.025-0.005
Mission Ready Services0.26+0.045

 



22997

FEATURED Property
2049960For sale by owner Up and down Duplex East hill Vernon $295,000. 0% commission
$295,000
more details
image2image2image2
Click here to feature your property
Please wait... loading


What is a journey without a destination?

Photo: ContributedI would call it a joy ride... You see a planned project or business has a destination. It may be an ongoing revenue stream, it may be a business value or an exit strategy. If you don...


Joint accounts: what you need to know!

Establishing a joint account may seem like a great strategy at first glance. However, there are many factors that must be considered before taking this action. This article will explore the use of &ls...


Cost of an Injury Lawyer

Let’s face it; nobody wants to pay for legal services if they do not have to, but if you have been injured in an accident you may have thought about hiring a lawyer to help you navigate your cla...

_



23002

23002


Member of BC Press Council


22814