August 30, 2014
WASHINGTON (AP) - The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits jumped 20,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 362,000, though it remained at a level consistent with modest hiring.
The Labor Department says the four-week average, a less volatile measure, rose 8,000 to 360,750, the highest in six weeks. A department spokesman says heavy snowstorms in the Northeast didn't affect the total.
Applications are a proxy for layoffs. They have trended downward recently. The four-week average has declined 7.5 percent since mid-November and fell to a five-year low three weeks ago.
Still, the increase puts applications back in the 360,000-to-390,000 range, where they have fluctuated since early last year. Employers have added an average of 181,000 jobs a month since then.
Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
Viewers with disabilities can get assistance accessing this station's FCC Public Inspection File by contacting the station with the information listed below. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, 888-835-5322 (TTY), or email@example.com.