U.S. Initial Jobless Claims Rise 5,000

First-time filings for state unemployment benefits rose by 5,000 to a seasonally adjusted 310,000 last week, the U.S. Labor Department said Thursday.

The four-week average of new claims -- which smoothes out one-time events that can distort the weekly figures -- dropped by 250 to 318,250, while continuing jobless claims rose by 32,000 to 2.60 million. Economists say the four-week average provides a more accurate snapshot of the labor market.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2005

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