First-Time Unemployment Claims Rise Slightly

Total is 317,000 for the week ending Dec. 23.

Initial claims for unemployment insurance last week totaled 317,000 on a seasonally adjusted basis, the U.S. Labor Department reported on Dec. 28. The total was 1,000 claims higher than the previous week's revised total of 316,000.

The department's four-week moving average of initial claims was 315,750 last week, a decrease of 10,250 from the previous week's revised average of 326,000. The four-week moving average is generally considered to be a better indicator of underlying U.S. labor market conditions since it smooths out sometimes volatile week-to-week changes.

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