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Applications for US unemployment benefits increase to 302k; still at pre-recession levels
Reported by: Associated Press
Reported: Thursday, July 31, 2014 8:36 AM EDT
More people sought U.S. unemployment benefits last week, but jobless claims remain at pre-recession levels.
The four-week average, a less volatile measure, fell 3,500 to 297,250. That's the lowest average since April 2006, more than a year before the Great Recession began at the end of 2007.
Applications are a proxy for layoffs. When employers keep their workers, it suggests potential income gains, active hiring and confidence that the economy is growing.
Economists forecast that the employment report being released Friday will show that 225,000 jobs were added in July, according to a survey by the data firm FactSet.