Jobless Claims Rise in Poor Job Market

WASHINGTON -- The tally of newly laid-off workers requesting unemployment benefits rose last week after four weeks of flat or declining figures.

The Labor Department says initial claims for jobless aid rose by 12,000 to a seasonally adjusted 465,000. Many economists had expected a flat reading or a small drop.

The rise suggests that jobs remain scarce and some companies are still cutting workers amid sluggish economic growth. Initial claims have fallen from a recent spike of more than half-million last month. But they have been stuck above the 450,000 level for most of the year.

The four-week average of claims, a less volatile measure, declined by 3,250 to 463,250. That's the lowest level since the end of July, but down by only 4,000 since January.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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