By John S. McClenahen Economists generally expected initial claims for unemployment benefits to draft downward to about 405,000 for the week ending June 1. In fact, they plummeted to 383,000, a 32,000 fall from a revised 415,000 during the previous week, data from the U.S. Labor Department's Employment & Training Administration reveal. "Distortions from the federal claims extension has faded, and claims are settling back to a level consistent with modest labor market improvement," contends Merrill Lynch & Co., New York. Maury Harris, chief U.S. economist at UBS Warburg LLC., New York is not so sure. "One week does not make a trend, particularly a week that includes a holiday [Memorial Day]," he stresses. "More evidence will be required to conclude that the job market is truly on the road to recovery."