U.S. Jobless Claims Reach New High

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Unemployment BenefitsJust when you thought the economy was getting better, a new surprise awaits. A recent report shows U.S. workers continue to lose jobs. Initial unemployment claims increased by 14,000 to 348,000 in the week ended Feb. 22 (the highest level in five weeks) up from 334,000 a week earlier, according to the United States Department of Labor.

The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.3% for the week ending February 15. The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending February 15 increased by 8,000 to 2.96 million.

Other findings:

  • Initial claims for unemployment insurance benefits filed by former Federal civilian employees totaled 1,178 in the week ending February 15.
  • There were 1,676 initial claims filed by newly discharged veterans.
  • There were 22,308 former Federal civilian employees claiming unemployment insurance benefits for the week ending February 8, an increase of 776 from the previous week.
  • Newly discharged veterans claiming benefits totaled 29,570.
  • Some of the highest insured unemployment rates in the week ending February 8 were in Alaska (6.1%), New Jersey (4.2%), Rhode Island (4.2%), and Pennsylvania (3.9%).
  • Some of the largest increases in initial claims for the week ending February 15 were in California (+5,832), Michigan (+2,129), Oregon (+1,574), and Missouri (+1,045).
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