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The number of Americans filing new jobless claims has declined after failing to budge last week, though it still remains historically high.
The Labor Department on Thursday said that 860,000 Americans filed jobless claims last week, down 33,000 from the week prior. Last week, Labor Department data showed no decline in new jobless claims, raising concern after experts thought there would be a dip. Ahead of Thursday's data, economists had predicted there would be about 875,000 claims, writes CNBC.
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This was another week that the number of claims stayed below one million, although experts have noted that the past few weeks' numbers shouldn't be directly compared to the numbers from earlier in the pandemic since the Labor Department recently changed its methodology.
Despite the decline, jobless claims are still about five times higher than they were prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, NBC News notes, and the number continues to surpass the pre-pandemic record of 695,000 claims in one week.
"Unemployment is down from its peak," American University economist Bradley Hardy told The Wall Street Journal, "but I remain concerned."
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