U.S. Unemployment Insurance Claims Fall to Fresh Pandemic Low
Applications for U.S. state unemployment insurance fell for a fourth consecutive week as more Americans get vaccinated and businesses reopen to eager customers.
Initial claims in regular state programs decreased by 38,000 to 406,000 in the week ended May 22, Labor Department data showed Thursday. The median estimate in a Bloomberg survey of economists called for 425,000 applications.
The decrease in claims underscores the labor market recovery is chugging along as remaining pandemic restrictions are eased. Hiring is expected to continue to pick up in the coming months as more Americans travel and socialize.
Stocks climbed after the jobless claims report as well as separate data showing orders for U.S. business equipment rose more than forecast. Orders placed with factories for business equipment rose in April by the most in eight months, the Commerce Department said Thursday. Treasury yields rose, while the dollar was little changed.
Washington, New Jersey and Florida led among states with the biggest declines last week, Thursday’s data show.
Continuing claims for ongoing state benefits declined in the week ended May 15.
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