From the AP:
The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose to the highest level since early March, the government reported Thursday.
The Labor Department said that 315,000 newly laid off workers applied for jobless benefits last week, an increase of 11,000 from the previous week. The claims total was the highest since 319,000 laid off workers applied for benefits the week ending March 11.
Private economists had been forecasting a much smaller rise of around 2,000 applications last week. Even with the bigger increase, claims remained at a level indicating a relatively strong labor market.
The four-week moving average of claims, which smooths out weekly volatility, edged up slightly to 308,500 last week, compared to 305,750 the previous week. It was the highest level in three weeks.
There were two states reporting an increase in layoffs of more than 1,000 for the week of April 15.
Georgia said that layoffs increased by 2,024, a rise that was blamed on higher unemployment in the textile industry. New Jersey officials reported an increase in layoffs of 1,625 with the rise blamed on increasing numbers of pink slips in transportation, warehousing and service industries.
The Initial Claims Report can be found here:
While the weekly increase in New Jersey layoffs is interesting. I wouldn’t read too far into the number. For some insight into these numbers, take a look at the New Jersey WARN Notices for this year. Those can be found here: