US Jobless Claims Drop to 364,000 - A Pandemic-Era Low
According to a report released by the Labor Department on Thursday, 364,000 Americans claimed first-time jobless benefits over the last week, a 51,000 drop from the previous week and the lowest number since the start of the pandemic last year.
The report comes out one day before the much anticipated June Non-Farm Jobs Report which is expected to show a gain of roughly 700,000 new jobs and a slight decrease in the unemployment rate.
Although analysts are hopeful that these are signs of an economic recovery, several are concerned because many businesses have been having difficulty finding applicants for open job positions, particularly, entry-level positions.
Another concern is that although new weekly jobless claims fell, continuing claims saw an increase to 3.47 million, up 56,000 from the previous week. However, that data lags a week behind and may change over the next week.
Inflation continues to be a concern as well. Economists are worried that the sudden increase in consumer demand will continue to affect inflation (the US is experiencing the highest inflation since 2008). The FED announced two weeks back a planned increase in interest rates for late 2023 to combat inflation.
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