To analysts’ surprise, 860,000 in U.S. file new unemployment claims



Feb. 18 (UPI) — Another 860,000 workers in the United States have filed new unemployment claims, the Labor Department said in its weekly report Thursday, almost 100,000 more than economists predicted.

The department said a total of 861,000 people filed for new jobless claims last week, an increase of about 13,000 over the previous week.

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The report also revised up the previous week’s claims by 55,000, a significant increase.

Most analysts had expected about 770,000 new claims.

The department said there are just under 4.5 million continuing claims, which lag initial filings by a week. The unemployment rate for last week was 3.2%.

The report shows that the COVID19 pandemic continues to impact the U.S. workforce, despite some positive signals in the economy.

A day earlier, the Commerce Department said retail sales in the United States increased by more than 5% during the month of January, far greater growth than economists were anticipating.



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