US jobless claims rise to 419,000 from a pandemic low

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A hiring sign hangs in the window of a Taco Bell in Sacramento, Calif., Thursday, July 15, 2021. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli))

By CHRISTOPHER RUGABER

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits rose last week from the lowest point of the pandemic, even as the job market appears to be rebounding on the strength of a reopened economy.

The Labor Department said Thursday that jobless claims increased last week to 419,000, the most in two months, from 368,000 the previous week. The number of first-time applications, which generally tracks layoffs, has fallen steadily since topping 900,000 in early January.

Economists characterized last week’s increase as most likely a blip caused by some one-time factors and partly a result of the inevitable bumpiness in the week-to-week data. Applications for jobless aid jumped last week, for example, in Michigan, where some auto plants have temporarily shut down production because of supply shortages.

Categories: Associated Press