The number of Americans filing applications for unemployment benefits increased moderately last week, pointing to still strong labor market conditions despite signs that economic activity was slowing.
Initial claims for state unemployment benefits rose 8,000 to a seasonally adjusted 216,000 for the week ended July 13, the Labor Department said on Thursday, putting them in the middle of their 193,000-230,000 range for this year.
Data for the prior week was revised to show 1,000 fewer applications received than previously reported. Last week’s increase in claims was in line with economists’ expectations.
The four-week moving average of initial claims, considered a better measure of labor market trends as it irons out week-to-week volatility, dipped 250 to 218,750 last week.