New weekly filings for state unemployment benefits should dip to around 360,000 for the week ended Mar. 12. Claims began trending higher as the new year began, and by mid-February, the four-week average of claims had risen to 378,000, the highest level since October, 1992. However, the severe winter weather's impact on job-search and hiring activity appears to be more to blame for the early-year rise than any new deterioration in the labor market.
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