Unemployment claims in the United States have reached a new low in the COVID-19 era, the Labor Department showed in its weekly report Thursday.
The report said 547,000 U.S. workers filed new jobless claims last week — the lowest figure since March 14, 2020, and a weekly decline of almost 40,000. The department also revised up the previous week’s claims by 10,000
The number of new claims was significantly less than the 600,000 most analysts predicted.
Thursday’s report also said the unemployment rate was 2.6% for the most recent week available. There were about 3.7 million continuing claims, also a pandemic low, which lag initial claims by a week.
About 17 million Americans are still receiving benefits under various programs, the report said.
“This dip in jobless claims looks good in isolation but what really matters is that it confirms that last week’s unexpected plunge was no fluke,” said Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, according to CNBC.
“We expect further declines over the next few months as the reopening continues, while payroll growth will accelerate markedly.”