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Fewest Firings Since 2007 Mark U.S. Job-Market Gains

Fewer Americans filed applications for unemployment benefits last week than at any time since before the last recession, indicating bigger gains in hiring will soon follow.

Jobless claims decreased by 32,000 to 300,000 in the week ended April 5, the least since May 2007, seven months before the worst economic slump in the post-World War II era began, a Labor Department report showed today in Washington. Another report showed rising gasoline prices were hurting consumer sentiment.