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Jobless Claims Decline More Than Expected

Despite Labor Department's report of a bigger-than-expected drop of 6,000, analysts predict unemployment to increase in coming months, reflecting a slow economy.

WASHINGTON (AP) β€” The number of newly laid-off workers filing claims for unemployment benefits in the U.S. fell by a larger-than-expected amount last week.
 
The Labor Department reported Thursday that applications for jobless benefits dropped by 6,000 last week to a total of 327,000. That was a bigger decline than analysts had been expecting.
 
The four-week average of claims did rise by 1,750 to 327,000, a six-month high, reflecting some of the pressures the labor market is coming under.
 
Analysts are looking for the unemployment rate to rise slightly in coming months, reflecting a slowing economy. For September, economists believe the jobless rate remained at 4.7 percent with businesses creating a modest 80,000 new jobs. The government will release that data Friday.
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