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Weekly jobless claims highest in five months

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Weekly jobless claims highest in five months

Weekly claims figure of 297,000 misses analysts’ expectations.

The Labor Department today reported that seasonally-adjusted initial claims for unemployment insurance for the week ended July 4 were 297,000, an increase of 15,000 from the previous week's revised figure.  

Analysts had expected an increase to 275,000.

The 4-week moving average, which smoothes out volatility to a certain extent, increased 4,500 to 279,500.

Although last week’s figure was disappointing, weekly claims have stayed below the 300,000 level for 18 straight weeks, which suggests to most economists that the labor market continues to strengthen.

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