First-time Jobless Claims Creep Up

By John S. McClenahen Initial claims for unemployment insurance were 339,000 last week, 1,000 more than during the previous week, the U.S. Department of Labor reported on March 25. However, last week's level was below the department's four-week moving average for initial claims. The four-week moving average was 341,500 for the week ending March 20, a decline of 3,000 from the previous week's revised average of 344,500. "The message: Job markets are improving," says UBS Investment Research, New York.

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