Jobless Claims Drop Less Than Expected

By John S. McClenahen As expected initial claims for unemployment insurance fell for the week ending April 6, though not quite as far as economists had expected. The seasonally adjusted figure for initial claims was 438,000, a decrease of 55,000 from the previous week's revised mark of 493,000, says the U.S. Labor Department's Employment & Training Administration. Economists, however, generally had forecast a decline to about 425,000. The decline during the first week of April does not imply an improved job market, stresses Maury Harris, chief U.S. economist for UBS Warburg, New York. He notes that continuing claims are now above 4.1 million, a 19-year high, "signaling that unemployment is not receding and that the Fed is not about to tighten [the money supply] soon."

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